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Respiratory Care Program Earns
National Recognition, Region’s Best


Aug. 3, 2020 — Northern Kentucky University earns national recognition for its  Respiratory Care Program, achieving the Commission on Accreditation for Respiratory Care’s (CoARC) standard of professional achievement.

CoARC recently announced the Distinguished Registered Respiratory Therapist Credentialing Success Award winners. NKU’s College of Health and Human Services is the only public, four-year institution in Greater Cincinnati and Kentucky to earn this national recognition. 

"I am extremely pleased with this recognition. It is a tribute to the hard work and dedication to student success exhibited by faculty and staff in our respiratory care program," said Dr. Dale Stephenson, dean of the College of Health and Human Services. "Under their direction, we will continue graduating well-prepared respiratory therapists, which are so needed to minimize lethal outcomes as a result of COVID-19."

The College of Health and Human Services program met each of CoARC's key accreditation metrics, including three or more years of outcomes data, holding accreditation without a progress report, documenting a credentialing success of 90 percent or above and meeting/exceeding success and retention thresholds.

Students in the Respiratory Care Program experience real-life situations through simulations in the university's Health Innovation Center (HIC), one of the country's largest and most comprehensive health professions buildings. The HIC is home to the St. Elizabeth Center for Simulation Education that features eight inpatient living labs. Students also have clinical rotations in hospitals, long-term care facilities, outpatient diagnostics and clinics in the Greater Cincinnati area. 

"From the first to last breath, respiratory therapists are by your side. We are on the front lines, treating patients with doctors and nurses," said Dr. Tom Baxter, director of NKU's Respiratory Care Program. "With many healthcare institutions in the community expanding services, the need for therapists has greatly increased. Our advisory committee keeps us abreast of their needs, and that's what makes our program special. We produce graduates who are actively sought out for honing the necessary tools for success."

This is the second year in a row CoARC has highlighted NKU's program. To learn more about the Respiratory Care Program, visit its website

About NKU: Founded in 1968, we are a growing metropolitan university of more than 15,000 students served by more than 2,000 faculty and staff on a thriving suburban campus near Cincinnati. Located in the quiet suburb of Highland Heights, Kentucky—just seven miles southeast of Cincinnati—we have become a leader in Greater Cincinnati and Kentucky by providing a private school education for a fraction of the cost. While we are one of the fastest growing universities in Kentucky, our professors still know our students' names. For more information, visit