ROCHESTER, Minn. -
Educators say the pandemic hasn't scared anyone off from the healthcare profession.
Rochester Community and Technical College has maxed out enrollment for its nursing program. The University of Minnesota Rochester - which focuses on the healthcare sciences - has enrollment that's up over 22 percent.
Susan Jansen - the Associate Dean of Nursing at RCTC believes nurses are appreciated for those traits now more than ever.
"I think it's an exciting time for nursing because we are so needed and we play a really vital role in helping people," Jansen said.
But students don't just want to become nurses - they are interested in all facets of healthcare.
"Public health, health policy, the leadership of healthcare, the business of healthcare, emerging health technologies is an area that of course is absolutely exploding," Chancellor Lori Carrell of the University of Minnesota Rochester said.
Carrell believes the fight against coronavirus will actually change the trajectory of more lives than just students.
"We're imagining that young people, maybe even children are currently being inspired by the healthcare workers and the scientists, who are making discoveries and by the public health officials," Carrell said.
The pandemic might be instilling fear and anxiety for some. But it might also inspire wonder, curiosity and a call for action from the next generation.
"It takes courage and it takes talent and it takes years of study to be prepared to give when the need is great and I think there are children all over Minnesota who are dreaming of a career like that," Carrell said.
Right now - UMR and RCTC are finalizing plans for the fall. There's no set decision on whether or not they'll fully reopen their doors.