Oklahoma Higher Education Campus E-Clips sponsored by the Communicators Council

April 2012

Reaccreditation Visit Successful for OPSU Nursing Program

Oklahoma Panhandle State University's RN-to-BSN program faculty and staff members recently hosted a team of evaluators from the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC). The team found the program to be in compliance and will recommend the maximum eight-year reaccreditation to the NLNAC board of review and board of commissioners.

Reaccreditation means that NLNAC found OPSU's program continues to meet or exceed standards and criteria for educational quality. The site visit is the first step in the process and the final decision from the commissioners will be available in the fall; however, those within the program are confident they will follow the evaluation team's recommendation.

The program provides Registered Nurses (RNs) who have already earned an associate degree in nursing the opportunity to complete a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) degree in order to enhance the education they already received. Nurses with a four-year, or bachelor's degree, may be promoted more quickly and may be in a better position to take on leadership, management, or community health positions. It also provides them with the background necessary to enter graduate nursing programs.

In existence since 1996, OPSU's RN-to-BSN program was one of the first programs to be delivered totally online and is designed to meet the challenges of busy, practicing RNs who may be juggling family, work, and other obligations. Because no travel is required for the coursework, it also meets the needs of distance learners.

During the 2010-11 academic year, 30 bachelor's degrees in nursing were earned at OPSU. Over 35 percent of OPSU BSN graduates enter master's programs including nurse practitioner programs, clinical nurse specialist programs, and programs in nursing education and administration. While students from across the nation are enrolled in the program, local BSN graduates are meeting the health care needs of the service area as school nurses, nurse practitioners, nurse educators, nurse managers and a variety of other nursing positions.

For more information about the RN-to-BSN program at OPSU, contact Lynna Brakhage, BSN program director at 580-349-1520.

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