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Plan will disburse $5M to supplement qualified nursing faculty pay

Tue, 10/11/2022

Columbia — As part of the state’s efforts to address the nursing shortage, the South Carolina Commission on Higher Education (CHE) announced today that it is preparing to disburse $5M to supplement the salaries of nursing faculty at public universities, colleges and technical colleges with accredited nursing programs.

One of the known barriers to nursing education is a pay gap between nursing faculty positions and higher-paying clinical nursing positions.

The General Assembly allocated funding in the FY 2022-23 General Appropriations Bill to supplement salaries of existing full-time faculty and the hourly rates of part time faculty, or the salaries of clinical nursing faculty. The goal of the funding is to stimulate interest in nursing faculty positions and effectively broaden the state’s capacity to instruct more nursing students.

In the bill, the CHE was designated to develop a plan to allocate and distribute the funding.

“Many different factors contribute to the nursing workforce shortage in our state, and multiple approaches must be taken to solve the problem,” said CHE President and Executive Director Rusty Monhollon, PhD. “To address this from a higher-education perspective, our legislators recognized the importance of financial incentives for nurses who teach their profession. This will help our state provide the educational capacity to train as many nurses as possible.”

The CHE notified chief financial officers of institutions slated to receive funding by email in September.

Additional information on the allocations, including amounts per institution and a list of frequently asked questions, is available on the CHE Nursing Initiative page.

The $5M is half of $10M in total allocated to the CHE in the state budget to address South Carolina’s nursing shortage. Following the announcement of the state’s 2023 budget, the CHE formed a working group including public and private institutions offering nursing programs, the South Carolina Hospital Association, the South Carolina Technical College System, South Carolina Independent Colleges and Universities, and the South Carolina Student Loan Corporation, to analyze current data and develop a formula to distribute the appropriations.

The CHE continues to work with partners across higher education, healthcare and the finance sector to develop a plan for disbursement of the remaining $5M, which will be dedicated to reducing costs for students enrolled in graduate-level nurse educator programs, Doctor of Nursing Practice, or PhD programs. Additional details will be announced once finalized.