Nursing School Provides Online Alternative

As one school proves with the addition of an online associate’s program, recent innovations in online media make it possible for more students to complete a degree program. Allowing nursing students to complete studies and tests over the internet allows flexibility for students that may not be able to take full time courses due to work, family, or other obligations.

(NECN) Southern University will add a new wrinkle to its highly regarded nursing program this year with the addition of an accelerated online version of the program slated to begin in August.

The Advocate reports ( ) the online Bachelor of Science Nursing degree will be a yearlong alternative to what is typically a four-year program.

Nurses who have previously earned a two-year associate’s degree, have a year experience in nursing and a 2.6 grade-point average on a 4.0 scale are eligible for the new online program, provided their nursing license is in good standing with the state.

Chancellor James Llorens said the program would fill the dual purpose of responding to a market need, while also generating revenue for the Baton Rouge campus.

Repeated state budget cuts have taken a toll on Southern’s financial outlook, especially when coupled with the school’s declining enrollment, Llorens said. Enrollment at Southern University has dipped from nearly 9,500 students to about 6,700 students during the past several years.

Jacqueline Hill, chairwoman of Southern’s undergraduate nursing program, said the new degree program would be an intensive, 12-month initiative that would incorporate elements such as research, community service and leadership, plus a hands-on clinical component.

“There is a need for more nurses with a Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree,” Hill said. “The Institute of Medicine is saying 80 percent of nurses need to have a BSN by 2020.”

Hill said the university has been fielding calls for years from students hoping the university would start the program.

Read more: Southern Adds Online Nursing Program

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