Post Cards From Nevada: Great Basin Community College - KTVN Channel 2 - Reno Tahoe Sparks News, Weather, Video

Post Cards From Nevada: Great Basin Community College

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Bill Brown
Channel 2 News

Caught between a rock and a hard spot - that's how many at Great Basin Community College describe themselves Looking at the budget cuts for higher education looming at the legislature.

Their problem? They have a program they say works. "Our programs are industry based. You know mining in this area supports these technical programs and they provide scholarships and jobs and most of our students come out with a job when they're done with the training so these programs are very popular."

The faculty thinks they have everything Governor Brian Sandoval says he wants.

Heavy participation from an industry that helps pay for the students' education and then hires most of them on the way out.

And hundreds of other kids are just waiting their turn waiting to get into a college that because of continuing budget cuts can't serve the industries that want all the graduates they can turn out. "It will affect a third of our workforce. It has started to affect the students, there were 1,500 failed registrations, that were not able to get into a class this spring. They come in, they want to get into the technical programs, they want to get a job, we have to turn them away because there's no funding for it."

And it's not just mining careers that are on hold. Students here are training to save lives as EMTs.

And health experts say the U.S. is facing a critical nursing shortage over the next few years.

But in the undergraduate programs for nursing, one professor is only allowed to work with 8-students at a time in a class to make sure it's safe for you when they graduate. Again, the problem is funding. "Our enrollment is limited by the number of faculty that we can hire because there's an even bigger shortage of nursing faculty..."

It's tough to hire someone if they don't know if the job is going to last.

Even the students understand that. "As far as faculty and everyone that works here, you know, it's hard to keep fighting when you're constantly told up what you're doing isn't working..."

One of the plans on the table is to consolidate more of the community colleges, but professors say that will exclude even thousands more prospective students trying to get in.

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