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Montana State University breaks ground on new College of Nursing building in Bozeman

The building will be one of five new nursing facilities MSU will build on its campuses across Montana.
Posted at 2:25 PM, Apr 11, 2024

BOZEMAN — On Tuesday afternoon, Montana State University broke ground on a building funded by a historic investment into Bozeman’s nursing education.

"Jones Hall. The new nursing education building for the MSU, Mark and Robyn Jones College of Nursing, Bozeman campus,” announced MSU President Waded Cruzado at the groundbreaking ceremony.

"Groundbreaking is the ceremonial start of the construction phase. We’ve been designing the building for the last two years and now we’re starting into the more visible part of the project," said College of Nursing Dean Sarah Shannon.

Bozeman’s facility is just one of five new nursing buildings MSU will construct across Montana. Funded entirely through a $101 million donation made by the founders of Goosehead Insurance, Mark and Robyn Jones.

"It was the largest donation at the time, ever, in the United States, to a college of nursing," Shannon said.

These state-of-the-art nursing facilities equipped with simulation labs will help address key issues in Montana’s healthcare system.

Shannon said, "There’s a nursing shortage nationwide and Montana is no different. In fact, rural states tend to have a larger nursing shortage than other states."

She says MSU will be able to educate 100 more nurses every year, from 300 bachelor-prepped nurses to 400.

Fifty-two of 56 Montana counties are classified as medically underserved by the United States Department of Health and Human Services.

"And so, one of the things we needed was simply bigger buildings, bigger spaces to be able to educate more nurses," Shannon said.

Montana is currently sixth from the bottom in healthy pregnancies. But this historic donation will also create Bozeman’s first certified midwifery program.

Additional funds will help create an endowed scholarship fund for the college as well as endowed faculty professorships.

"And that will allow us to attract some of the top talent in the United States to be nursing faculty here at Montana State University," said Shannon.

For more information on the project, read here.