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University Explores Nursing Degree Program

November 2, 2010

Averett University has a long history of providing a quality liberal arts education. As part of that history, the University has prepared graduates for successful careers in all aspects of healthcare - ranging from clinical, veterinary and dental medicines along with allied health. This history is what led the University to begin researching its ability to provide a nursing degree.

If the University is approved to offer a program, interested students would be able to pursue a traditional bachelor of science in nursing degree (BSN), a registered nurse to BSN degree through the University's Graduate and Professional Studies (GPS) Program or an accelerated BSN degree.

Late last month, the University announced it had formed a partnership agreement with Danville Regional Medical Center (DRMC). Through the partnership, DRMC will provide the clinical training at the hospital, as well as classroom space at its 245 Gray Street location, and Averett will lead the educational component of the program.

"This partnership truly affirms the strengths of both of these Dan River Region institutions, and aims to extend the quality nursing programs for the region's healthcare professionals and those seeking careers in healthcare," said Dr. Tiffany Franks, Averett's president.

The University's faculty and its Board of Trustees have already approved the aggressive exploration of additional health-related academic programs. However, the University still has to receive approval from the Virginia Board of Nursing and find funding to start the program. If approval is received, the University could start offering classes leading toward a nursing degree in the fall of 2011.

Currently, Averett is in the process of searching for a director of nursing. The director would be in charge of a variety of tasks including overseeing the implementation of the state-required nursing curriculum, preparing the documentation to be submitted to the Virginia Board of Nursing for approval of the program and would work with faculty to keep the curriculum relevant and current to meet accreditation standards.