OTTAWA -- MPP Steve Clark announced Friday that Ontario’s colleges can now apply to offer standalone nursing degrees.

The announcement was made at St. Lawrence College in Brockville on behalf of the Minister of College and Universities, Ross Romano, who revealed the new education policy at Georgian College in Owen Sound on Tuesday.

The Ontario government says the move will give students more opportunities to learn closer to home, as colleges will no longer require a university partner to offer bachelor nursing programs.

St. Lawrence College is one of 24 publicly funded colleges in Ontario, with campuses in Brockville, Kingston and Cornwall.