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Gov. Hutchinson announces expediting licenses for graduating nurses

Soon-to-be nurses will be working in no time. The turnaround will be just 24 hours and the application fees will be waived.

LITTLE ROCK, Arkansas — Now more than ever, nurses are needed to help those battling COVID-19 and other illnesses.

On Friday, Governor Asa Hutchinson announced that graduating nursing students will be put on the fast track to the frontlines.

RELATED: UAMS COVID-19 course alters pandemic curriculum for medical students

"We will have 1,104 nursing students that will graduate from nursing schools across Arkansas, and the nursing licensing board will expedite the licensure," said Gov. Asa Hutchinson.

This means that these soon-to-be nurses will be working in no time. The turnaround will be just 24 hours and the application fees will be waived.

Lara Morris is graduating from the University of Arkansas at Little Rock Nursing School Program next month. 

"Yeah, I can see the light at the end of the tunnel and it's a little bit nerve-wracking," said Morris.

Before Governor Asa Hutchinson's announcement, Morris was waiting on another paycheck to be able to afford the fees that come with graduating.

Morris explained the entire process after graduation from taking the NCLEX to paying for application fees can cost up to $400.

She hasn't started the license expenditure process yet, but she's already calling it a blessing in disguise.

"It has not been an easy process for us, but I'm really excited about [it.] I think God's timing is perfect, and waiting for that path to be able to manifest itself," said Morris."

RELATED: UAMS seeing need for more healthcare workers amid COVID-19 pandemic

"It wasn't an easy road, but it was the road I needed to appreciate going forward," she added.

One more healthcare worker ready to save lives.