The nationwide nursing shortage is expected to hit critical levels over the next decade, Pittsburgh included. To help meet this demand, Dallas, Pennsylvania-based Misericordia University is expanding its nursing program to offer a new accelerated path to a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) degree beginning in August.
With a new nursing learning center in Pittsburgh, Misericordia University's Department of Nursing will offer a 16-month Accelerated Bachelor of Science in Nursing (ABSN) program, building upon the University's nearly century-long tradition of graduating nurses.
"As the need for nurses continues to rise, it's critical we help meet the demand and provide the latest educational advancements required to improve the delivery of health care," said Dr. Brenda L. Hage, assistant dean of nursing and chief nurse administrator at Misericordia University. "We are confident students will graduate from our ABSN program with the necessary leadership and clinical skills to excel in today's ever-changing health care industry, and on a timeline that allows them to be of service to their communities as soon as possible."
The ABSN program allows qualified students to leverage their prior non-nursing education to earn a BSN in as little as 16 months. Through a mix of online coursework, onsite lab and simulation lab experiences at a new nursing learning center in Robinson Township, and clinical rotations at Allegheny Health Network health care facilities in the Pittsburgh area, students will gain real-world experience working as part of a multidisciplinary health care team.
Pittsburgh's health care sector is a prime destination for registered nurses because of the rapidly aging baby-boomer population and retirement wave of registered nurses. In fact, the city anticipates a projected growth rate of 13 percent a year in the nursing profession between 2015 and 2025, according to a 2016 Pittsburgh Business Times report.
"As an integrated medical system and provider in Pittsburgh, we at the Allegheny Health Network understand the benefit a baccalaureate educated nurse can have in our hospitals to impact outcomes for patient care and look forward to welcoming Misericordia University nursing students into our facilities to complete their clinical education," said Dr. Paula Coe, vice president, nursing education and professional practice for Allegheny Health Network.
Misericordia's ABSN program will offer three start dates annually — in January, May, and August — and is currently enrolling for its first start date in August 2019. To learn more about the accelerated nursing program, please visit absn.misericordia.edu.
Misericordia University features the oldest nursing program in Northeastern Pennsylvania, with graduates routinely surpassing the state and national pass rate averages for the National Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses (NCLEX-RN) for baccalaureate degree students.
"The successful completion of the licensing examination is a direct reflection of our nursing students' hard work and determination, and our faculty's expert guidance to help them be the best possible nurses in the health care field,'' said Dr. Annette Weiss, chairperson for Misericordia University's undergraduate nursing program.