Regis, a leading Catholic university in Greater Boston, announced the first group of students will earn bachelor’s degrees from its satellite campus at Northern Essex Community College (NECC) in Lawrence. The students participated in commencement at the university’s main campus in Weston.

“These students represent our efforts to provide an educational ladder to reach better opportunities for them and their families,” said President Antoinette Hays, PhD, RN. “We’re thrilled with their achievements and look forward to seeing where their future endeavors take them.”

“The partnership between Northern Essex Community College and Regis has opened a new gateway for college success. Regis North offers residents of Lawrence a chance to obtain a four-year degree right here at home,” said Mayor Daniel Rivera. “I am excited for the first graduating class of Regis North and I congratulate the students on their academic success. I look forward to many more Regis North graduations and partnerships in the future.”

“Regis North has expanded higher educational options available in Lawrence and it’s also benefited our students and graduates, allowing them to continue their education close to home while working in their fields. We’re looking forward to working together with Regis to grow this program,” said NECC President Lane Glenn.

Yanina Vasquez holds an associate’s degree from NECC and will graduate with a bachelor’s in public health from Regis. She plans to enter graduate school at Regis in the fall to earn her master’s in Health Administration. Originally from the Dominican Republic, her goal is to help the Spanish-speaking community through health care.

Yanina Vasquez, a Regis North student, in her graduation gown holding her diploma at the Commencement ceremony.

“Regis and NECC continue to provide crucial services to students who may not have access to higher education. I’m humbled and honored to receive a bachelor’s in public health from Regis and look forward to earning a master’s as well. As a mother, I understand the importance of health care to everyone, both young and old. With these two degrees, I’ll be able to achieve a lifelong dream of helping those in need in the Spanish-speaking community.”

In 2015, Regis opened its campus in Lawrence to bring new educational and professional opportunities in the high-demand health care industry to Lawrence and area residents. Students are required to earn an associate’s degree from NECC before admission to Regis.

Once enrolled at Regis, students are able to complete all of their required coursework at the satellite campus that is fully accredited by the New England Association of Schools and Colleges (NEASC). Additionally, all students who receive their bachelor’s in nursing can also receive a minor in public health, reflecting the university’s strong commitment to education in health care, not just for the individual but the entire community as well.

The university’s nursing program is one of only 19 in the country recognized as a Center for Excellence in Nursing Education by the National League for Nursing. In June 2016, the Nursing Schools Almanac named Regis one of the country’s top nursing schools.

For more on the satellite campus at NECC including application information, tuition fees, financial aid and course descriptions: