New Agreement with West Chester University Benefits Nursing Students
(Delaware and Chester Counties, PA • March 15, 2019)—West Chester University and Delaware County Community College have signed an agreement that will enable qualified Delaware County Community College students, pursuing an Associate in Applied Science Nursing Degree (ASN), to concurrently enroll, on a provisional basis, into the Registered Nurse-Bachelor of Science in Nursing (RN-BSN) degree program at West Chester University.
The new agreement helps students save time and money in their pursuit of the RN-BSN degree. Typically, RN-BSN programs require that individuals graduate from an accredited pre-licensure nursing program and successfully obtain licensure as a registered nurse before enrollment in BSN coursework. With this new concurrent degree program, students, who meet West Chester University RN-BSN admission requirements and are in good standing in Delaware County Community College’s nursing program, can pursue both the associate and baccalaureate degrees in nursing simultaneously.
“At a time when skilled nurses are in demand, this concurrent degree program is of great benefit to our students and to the healthcare industry,” said Dr. L. Joy Gates Black, president of Delaware County Community College.
“West Chester University is committed to helping students continue their RN education by providing a seamless path to a BSN degree that will provide numerous opportunities to advance careers,” said Dr. Christopher Fiorentino, president of West Chester University. “We take great pride that our University’s undergraduate nursing program is ranked number one out of 1,922 RN programs throughout the U.S. and its territories by Mountain Measurement, Inc. We could not be more pleased with our students’ continued success.”
Although the accelerated timeline toward credential attainment may differ depending on the individual, participants may be able to complete the concurrent degree program in 24 to 30 months from entry into Delaware County Community College’s ASN program. Participation in the program will be open to all of the College’s nursing students who meet eligibility requirements. However, the abbreviated timeline for completion of the BSN and the potential for substantial cost savings will also be an extremely attractive alternative for students who have previously completed a significant number of college credits, or a bachelor’s degree in another field, and are interested in transitioning to a career in nursing.
“The close collaboration between our two educational institutions has resulted in the development of a cost-effective, defined-academic pathway that moves beyond traditional RN-BSN articulation agreements. It
affords the College’s nursing students the opportunity to experience the added perspectives of baccalaureate coursework and the professional benefits of completion of the BSN within an abbreviated timeline,” said Dr. Faye Meloy, dean of Allied Health, Emergency Services & Nursing at Delaware County Community College.
“We are very fortunate to partner with Delaware County Community College,” said Dr. Megan Infanti Mraz, associate professor of Nursing at West Chester University. “The mission of the department of nursing is to provide the highest quality of nursing education to students who come from diverse populations. This partnership allows us to achieve not only our mission but the access mission of the University.”
The BSN program at West Chester University requires the completion of 122 course credits. Under the new RN-BSN concurrent agreement, Delaware County Community College nursing students can complete and transfer up to 92 credits to West Chester University. Participating students will also complete the remaining 30 nursing credits of West Chester University coursework to obtain the BSN.
This innovative plan of study enables students to complete 25 of the 30 credits in the concurrent degree program prior to graduation from Delaware County Community College’s nursing program. After successfully passing the National Council Licensure Examination and obtaining licensure as a registered nurse, the remaining two West Chester RN-BSN courses can be completed in as little as one semester. Consequently, it will be possible for Delaware County Community College nursing students who participate in the concurrent program to graduate with an associate degree in nursing in May, complete licensure requirements shortly thereafter, and complete degree requirements for a BSN from West Chester University as soon as August of the same year.
Admission is competitive. Applicants must have a cumulative GPA of at least 2.75, be actively enrolled in Delaware County Community College’s nursing program and meet all West Chester University requirements.
Questions about the new concurrent degree nursing program can be directed to Delaware County Community College’s Nursing Department at 610-359-5353, or to [email protected].
One of Several Agreements between West Chester University and Delaware County Community College
The concurrent ASN-RN/BSN program is the latest agreement between the two higher education institutions.
Last year, the two institutions announced an on-site, degree completion agreement that enables graduates with an Associate of Science in Business Administration degree, or other associate degree with the required business prerequisites, to earn a West Chester University Bachelor of Science degree in Business Management with a minor in Business Law, without ever having to leave the Marple Campus of Delaware County Community College.
This on-site, degree completion agreement offers students the convenience of location, ample free parking, and on-site admissions and academic advising. West Chester University faculty teach the courses at the College, and the courses are open to all University students, but with preference to Business Management majors who graduated with an associate degree in Business Administration from the College. Qualified students can early select the University’s most popular courses.
Students may take University courses online and/or at the College’s Marple Campus. The courses are offered in a “cohort-like model” that encourages small groups of students to progress through their coursework together. Studies have shown that cohort and cohort-like study arrangements benefit students by encouraging academic camaraderie and accountability.
Upon successful completion of this 60-credit program, students earn a West Chester University Bachelor of Science degree in Business Management, with a minor in Business Law.
For more information about this business program, contact Delaware County Community College’s Business Computing and Social Science Division at [email protected].
(Photo Caption: Delaware County Community College President Dr. L. Joy Gates Black and West Chester University President Dr. Christopher M. Fiorentino signing the West Chester University Bachelor of Science in Business Management degree-completion program agreement last year.