A required 1-to-10 faculty-to-student ratio and limited room for student placements at clinical sites means the School of Nursing accepts few students every year.
For fall 2018, the school created the CNS-to-Nursing program, which guarantees students a spot at the School of Nursing after transferring from the College of Natural Sciences. Now, after studying for three semesters, students will take the leap into the program next semester.
“The folks that we extended (the program) to (are people who) our admission committee felt that they could use more time in thinking for themselves why they wanted to go into this field (of nursing),” said Vinh Nguyen, assistant dean for student services at the School of Nursing.
For the 2018-19 school year, 90 students applying to the School of Nursing for their freshman year were directly admitted, and 40 were offered entrance into the CNS-to-Nursing program. Nguyen said about 2,300 to 2,700 total students applied to the School of Nursing.
“The only thing that wasn’t super clear is that not everyone else in my freshman class has to go through this process,” said Kaitlyn Lee, an undeclared freshman in the program. “But I can deal with the extra half semester and the extra things I need to do if that means I’m here.”
Nguyen said students in the program take similar classes to directly admitted nursing freshmen during their first two semesters. However, Nguyen said they have an extra semester before they enter the nursing school in their second year, which means they have to graduate in four and a half years.
“Having to stay an extra semester is definitely tough,” said Jheripye Reyes, an undeclared freshman in the program. “But in the end, I’m grateful (that) I have this opportunity in the first place.”
Of the 40 students offered entrance into the school, Nguyen said between 20 and 25 of the 30 students that accepted are still pursuing the nursing program. These students have to maintain a 3.0 GPA or higher, pass certain classes, have 120 hours of volunteering hours related to health care and write an essay before they can transfer, Nguyen said.
“Some have already said, ‘(Nursing) is not what I want to do,’” Nguyen said. “That’s very important because I’d rather get students to go where they want to go to rather than a program that is not what they want.”