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Augustana College's nursing students achieve 100%, Gettysburg College establishes Middle East and Islamic Studies program and more…

100 percent. That's the first-time passing rate for Augustana College's 58 graduates in 2010 who took the national licensing exam for registered nurses. The 150-year-old Sioux Falls, S.D., institution has prepared nurses since 1940. The national average first-time passing rate is 87.95 percent. "A 100 percent pass rate is simply phenomenal...," said Margot Nelson, chair of the nursing department. "The need for qualified nurses throughout the U.S. will continue to be critical, [and] we're proud to do all we can to help meet that need."

Gettysburg (Pa.) College will establish a Middle East and Islamic Studies program with a $532,000 grant from The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation. The four-year grant will help Gettysburg add a tenure-track faculty member in Arabic languages and cultures, develop an academic minor with at least two years of language study and an emphasis on study abroad, support student-faculty research, facilitate related cultural programs on campus and more. Gettysburg has a relationship with American University in Cairo, where 16 of its students have studied since 2007.

Roanoke College
, Salem, Va., received a $2.5 million bequest from the estate of the late Mary Ellen Hardin Smith, one of its former students and wife of 1931 graduate Shields Johnson. It is Roanoke's second largest gift by an individual and will endow the Shields Johnson Scholarship for students from the Roanoke Valley. Roanoke, which has 2,103 full- and part-time students, is "in the black" with a balanced budget for the 55th year.


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