Assuring Success with a Commitment to Enhance Nurse Diversity (ASCEND)
The ASCEND program is a great example of what makes working at Akron Children’s Hospital more than a job for our nurses. ASCEND demonstrates our passion and the commitment we have made toward ensuring that we continue - and build upon - our culture of collaboration, dedication and our commitment to outstanding care for our pediatric patients.
Launched in 2015, ASCEND is our initiative aimed at promoting a more diverse nursing workforce at Akron Children’s. Nursing students from underrepresented groups in nursing are selected by academic faculty to apply for the program.
LP.SKU-D4-13.STEP Facts about ASCEND:
- 10-week summer internship
- Designed for nursing students entering their senior year
- Students work three, 12-hours shifts and participate in 4-hour professional development days each week
- Current nursing school partners include: Ashland University, Case Western Reserve University, Cleveland State University, Hiram College, Kent State University, Malone University, Notre Dame College, University of Akron, University of Mount Union, Ursuline College, Walsh University, and Youngstown State University.
In return, ASCEND provides students with:
- Professional development opportunities
- Hands-on nurse-related activities
- One-on-one mentoring
- Potential future employment for qualified ASCEND interns
- Students also complete their PEARS (Pediatric Emergency Assessment, Recognition and Stabilization) certification
The results speak for themselves.
In our very first year, the program included Chinese, Native American, Filipino, Nepalese, Brazilian and African American nursing students. And now, after just three cohorts, we’ve already hired 37 registered nurses and 51 nurse techs.
RN, Staff Nurse, Transitional Care Unit
“It’s the staff and the culture at Akron Children’s that drew me in right away. It far exceeded that of any healthcare facility I had ever been in. The ASCEND program gave me a foot in the door to my future and I haven’t looked back since.”