LAS VEGAS (KLAS) — As a nursing shortage across the nation and the state of Nevada continues one local nursing school is preparing to expand to meet the growing demand of students entering the field.

The Arizona College of Nursing, Las Vegas campus will be expanding from 350 students to 500.

The nursing shortage started pre-COVID and as the baby boomer generation begins to retire and others leave the field due to burnout, the expansion couldn’t come at a better time.

Jonathan Ceasar is a full-time student at Arizona College of Nursing, at the Las Vegas campus and believes now more than ever nurses are needed to help those in need.

“It made me double down, you know this is real, people are going to need help more than ever,” Ceasar added.

The Arizona College of Nursing offers an accelerated bachelor of science of nursing program, where students can complete their work in nine semesters in a three-year time frame, instead of four years.

Dr. Jill Rankin is the dean of nursing at Arizona College, at the Las Vegas campus, and says the program offers reinforcements at a very crucial time.

“The best next generation of nursing students, to help in the fight of the covid pandemic. We know they are tired and stressed, but we are working hard, behind the scenes,” said Rankin. “I truly believe that right now we are seeing exactly what the art of nursing is – the compassion, patience, and service, that nursing brings, and we are so proud of the nurses on the front lines right now.”