The Board of Regents approved a proposal to initiate a Bachelor of Science degree in nursing at its February meeting.
“In the early fall semester of 2017 the (Department of Nursing Education) chairperson was approached by the DMC president to inquire about the possibility of offering the RN to BSN program track at DMC,” said Evangeline Deleon, chair of the nursing program.
The demand for nurses in Nueces County will be up 21% by 2029 and will require over 4,425 nursing positions, according to Deleon. This information boosted the effort to gain approval for the new degree.
The Department of Nursing Education surveyed students in the program to see whether a BSN pathway would be effective and efficient. The survey received positive feedback, with 85.9% of graduates and 96% of currently enrolled RN students saying they would consider the BSN.
Deleon and the department followed the necessary steps to further the proposal and meet with other DMC administrators.
“Throughout 2018-2019 DNE administrators met with the president, chief financial officer, chief academic officer along with the divisional dean to keep DMC administration abreast of the planning process,” Deleon said. “Additionally, meetings were held when seeking guidance, as needed, for information required in order to complete various proposals.”
The BSN will ultimately impact health care by increasing the number of prepared nurses in the community. The cost of tuition will also be lower than most BSN programs at universities across the state, Deleon said.
“We are confident that every aspect of the cost and benefits in offering the RN to BSN at DMC are positive” Deleon said. “The trend in nursing is to encourage higher education and our department strives to provide this opportunity to DMC nursing students.”
The BSN proposed start date is 2021. Approval from Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board, Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing and Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges are still pending.
For more information on the program, contact the Department of Nursing Education at 698-2860.