Processing Your Payment

Please do not leave this page until complete. This can take a few moments.

Updated: May 30, 2024

Two Maine college nursing programs get accredited

Group photo of Northern Maine Community College nursing student 2023 graduating class. Photo / Courtesy of Northern Maine Community College The 2023 graduating class from the Practical Nursing program at Northern Maine Community College.

Two colleges in Maine said they have received national accreditation for their nursing programs as they train students to help address the statewide staffing shortage.

Northern Maine Community College, based in Presque Isle, said it has received formal notification from the Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing confirming accreditation of its Practical Nursing program.

The one-year certificate program, launched in spring 2019, prepares graduates to become licensed practical nurses, or LPNs. 

ACEN, based in Atlanta, Ga., aims to ensure highest quality of nursing instruction, giving its seal of approval to programs with well-defined and appropriate educational objectives and a commitment to achieving those objectives.

The decision to accredit NMCC's program follows a two-year evaluation of the program's curriculum, faculty preparation, administrative capacity and student outcomes to ensure the program meets or accedes ACEN's quality requirements.

"Practical nursing bridges a critical care gap in health care, which has become more pronounced in recent years,” said Angela Buck, NMCC’s academic dean. “Graduates of this program are able to enter the field faster than registered nurses and provide critical care to patients in hospitals and other healthcare settings."

Some 78 students have graduated from the program so far and entered the field, with many taking roles in Aroostook County's local health care network. In the upcoming fall semester, the program has slots for 24 incoming students.

YCCC program for registered nurses  

In a separate announcement, York County Community College, said that its nursing program has secured initial accreditation from ACEN.

The two-year associate degree program prepares graduates to be registered nurses, or RNs.

Michael Fischer, president of the Wells-based institution, called the accreditation "a testament to the unwavering dedication of our faculty, staff, students and clinical partners."

Both educational institutions are part of the Maine Community College System. 

A 2022 report by the Cypress Research Group for the Maine Hospital Association and the Maine Nursing Action Coalition projected a 9% shortage in full-time registered nurses by 2025, smaller than the 20% shortage that had been originally forecast due to a large increase in the number of RNs early in their careers. However, those findings were based on data gathered during the pandemic.

Sign up for Enews

Related Content


Order a PDF