A national accrediting agency has placed its official stamp of approval on Alma College’s undergraduate nursing program.
The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) degree has achieved full accreditation from the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education.
“Receiving accreditation is a crucial achievement that assures the public that our students are enrolled in a credible program that meets high standards,” says Judith McKenna, Alma’s nursing education director. “It speaks to the quality, rigor and structure of our education program that prepares students to be safe and effective nurses.”
Alma’s BSN program, launched in 2014, now has 90 enrolled students, with an anticipated incoming class of an additional 28 first-year nursing students in the fall. Nursing ranks as the fastest growing major at Alma College.
Twenty-two students have already graduated from Alma’s program. Graduates are required to pass the National Council of Licensure Examination, or NCLEX, in order to be a registered nurse in the State of Michigan. Alma’s current 95 percent pass rate exceeds the national NCLEX pass rate of 72 percent.
Alma’s four-year nursing degree emphasizes the development of creative problem-solving and interpersonal skills in addition to nursing fundamentals, says McKenna. The program also incorporates early clinical experiences to prepare students to deliver high-quality treatment and adapt quickly to changing patient needs.
An affiliation agreement with MidMichigan Medical Center-Gratiot provides clinical laboratory space for Alma’s students. The simulation lab with high-fidelity mannequins allows for hands-on training and gives students opportunities to work on skills, such as starting injections or IVs, measuring vitals, monitoring heart and lungs, and treating symptoms.
The Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education evaluates nursing programs against a series of core standards related to mission, institutional commitment, instruction, teaching-learning practices and outcomes assessment. Alma’s nursing program is accredited through 2022.