St. John Fisher College Announces Online RN-to-BS in Nursing Program
St. John Fisher College recently announced that the Wegmans School of Nursing will offer an Online RN-to-BS in Nursing Program beginning this September.
“The College is pleased to offer its first totally online academic program,” said Dr. Donald Bain, President of the College. “We expect this to be the initial offering in a series of online programs from Fisher designed to respond to the needs of working professionals in terms of scheduling, flexibility, and value.”
The program is designed for registered nurses (RNs) who graduated from an accredited school of nursing with an associate’s degree, or RNs who graduated from an accredited hospital-based diploma program and have active RN licensure, and who wish to pursue their baccalaureate degree.
According to Dr. Dianne Cooney Miner, Dean, Wegmans School of Nursing, the timing of the new program is ideal, as there is a bill currently under review in the New York State legislature focused on advancing nursing education. Known as the “BS in 10” bill, this legislation, when passed, will require nurses prepared at the associate-degree and diploma levels to complete a bachelor’s degree in nursing within ten years of graduation in order to maintain active licensure.
“There are more nurses employed today than ever before in our history. This bill preserves a ready supply of well-prepared registered nurses to meet the work force needs in New York,” she said. “The bill, along with the Institute of Medicine’s Future of Nursing Report, which recommends that by 2020, 80% of the nursing workforce be baccalaureate-prepared, clearly outlines the need for nurses to advance their education in the interest of quality patient care.”
Miner adds that a number of compelling research studies point to the fact that a more educated workforce is associated with better patient outcomes.
“We are looking forward to offering working nurses a convenient and efficient way to achieve that education—in the interest of the profession, of the public we serve, and of ongoing, quality health care,” said Miner.
The fully-accredited program will include a total of nine seven-week modules that typically offer one nursing and one liberal arts course per module. However, each student’s plan of study will be individually designed based on previously completed coursework. The coursework will focus on advancing and refining skills in areas such as leadership, ethics, physical assessment, evidence-based practice, patient-centered care, professional portfolio development, caring for diverse populations, and more. In addition, the program has been designed to be completed in as little as 18 months. Courses will be taught by current nursing faculty at the Wegmans School of Nursing.
The College currently offers a hybrid RN-to-BS in Nursing Program, holding some courses on campus and other courses online. Miner says that the new program will replace the hybrid program, and is the logical “next step” in program delivery.
The program will also offer the RN-to-BS to MS Fast-Track option, giving students the opportunity to substitute graduate courses for two undergraduate courses while they are earning their bachelor’s degree, allowing them to get a head start on completing a master’s degree in nursing if they so choose.
For more information about the Online RN-to-BS in Nursing Program, contact Fisher’s Office of Transfer Admissions at (585) 385-8172 or visit www.sjfc.edu/rnbs.