They came from many walks of life and academic paths to fulfill a common goal – to become a registered nurse.
On Sept. 21, the W. Cary Edwards School of Nursing at Thomas Edison State College held a pinning ceremony for the graduates of its inaugural Accelerated 2nd Degree BSN Program to celebrate their success.
The accelerated, one-year Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) degree program is designed for adult learners who already possess a non-nursing bachelor’s degree and who are interested in becoming registered nurses.
“This program was intense, demanding and designed for motivated students only,” said 2012 graduate Amanda Pinnelli, of Sewell, N.J., who had earned a BS degree in Kinesiology from Temple University before enrolling in the one-year BSN program. She said that the program has afforded her the credentials she was seeking in a shorter period of time compared to conventional programs.
“I always had a dream of becoming a nurse and a desire to care for people,” noted Pinnelli. “Once I embark on my nursing career, I hope to gravitate toward post-surgical rehabilitation. If I can do this every day for the rest of my life, I can say that I have reached my goal.”
Of the three program components that Pinnelli and her cohort completed – hands on clinical nursing experience, online courses and classroom-based instruction – the latter is a departure for the W. Cary Edwards School of Nursing, whose RN-to-BSN students customarily complete their course work online.
“The students put forth an extraordinary effort and had to be fully committed to putting their lives on hold for the program,” said Dr. Phyllis Marshall, dean of W. Cary Edwards School of Nursing. “The program’s pace and rigor demanded that they exclude most other activities from their lives, including work, while they fulfilled their BSN course requirements.”
The 16 graduates are now preparing to take the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX-RN) exams, which are nationally-mandated for the licensing of registered nurses.
“This first Accelerated 2nd Degree BSN class is a remarkable group,” added Marshall. “They will bring a wealth of knowledge, compassion, adaptability, and professionalism to the field of nursing.”
To find out more about the programs available through the W. Cary Edwards School of Nursing, visit www.tesc.edu/nursing.