Nursing RIBN Signing

N.C. A&T, Community Colleges Launch Nursing Initiative

North Carolina A&T State University and three community colleges have announced that they’ll work together to increase the number of nurses entering the field with bachelor’s degrees.

Guilford Technical and Community College, Davidson County Community College and Vance-Granville Community College will join N.C. A&T in the Regionally Increasing Baccalaureate Nurses initiative.

Beginning with the fall 2016 semester, new nursing students will be able to apply to both A&T and one of the community colleges. Up to 30 students a year will be admitted into the co-admission/continual enrollment program.

For three years, they will take one A&T online course per semester along with their community college courses, earning their associate’s degree in nursing. Designated non-nursing courses completed at the community colleges will satisfy A&T course requirements toward the bachelor’s degree.

After passing the state licensure exam, the students will automatically be admitted to A&T for one year for additional nursing courses required for the bachelor’s degree in nursing. The courses include such subjects as gerontological and community health nursing, leadership and management, informatics, and research and evidence-based practice.

The fourth-year students will attend classes online or at the Union Square campus, now under construction in downtown Greensboro. The program will represent an expansion of A&T’s BSN completion program.

“This initiative is a proven success in increasing the number of baccalaureate nurses,” said Frostenia Milner, coordinator for the A&T BSN completion program. Nine other such partnerships have been launched in North Carolina since 2008.

About 55 percent of nurses in North Carolina enter the field with associate’s degrees. “Research shows reduced mortality and morbidity associated with certain patient outcomes with nurses with a BSN nurse at the bedside,” she said.

Miller notes that beyond the bachelor’s degree, a master’s degree is required for many advanced nursing positions such as department managers and advanced-practice positions such as clinical nurse specialists and nurse practitioners.

For more information on the Regionally Increasing Baccalaureate Nurses initiative, go to http://www.ribn.org/.