In January 2018, Hodges University welcomed its first cohort of students to the Bachelor of Science in nursing (BSN) program on the university’s Naples campus.

The university’s School of Health Sciences will host a special ribbon cutting ceremony at 6:00 p.m. on May 24, 2018, to unveil the new simulation laboratory for its first professional nursing program. University namesake Thelma Hodges will receive the honor of cutting the ribbon and welcoming guests to tour the state-of-the art facility, which is housed on Hodges’ Naples campus located at 2647 Professional Circle, Naples, FL 34119.

“We want to showcase the advanced simulation learning environment used to prepare future nursing professionals and attract future nursing students,” said Jessica Palumbo, director of nursing at Hodges University.

The Bachelor of Science in nursing program was developed cognizant of recommendations of the Institute of Medicine (IOM) report, The Future of Nursing (2010), which acknowledges the need for the nursing profession to take a leadership role to meet the demands of our dynamic health care system.

The IOM report projected the percentage of nurses with baccalaureate degrees to increase from 50 to 80 percent (80/20) by 2020.

In an effort to meet these recommendations, Hodges University sought to develop a baccalaureate degree program for aspiring nurses as well as meet the growing demands of the workforce.

Hodges University has made the commitment to be an Assessment Technologies Institute (ATI) in order to assure acquisition of the knowledge required for the National Council Licensure Examination – Registered Nurse (NCLEX-RN) success and transition to professional practice.

Hodges provides a unique class schedule to accommodate the adult learner,” said Palumbo. As Hodges’ director of nursing, Palumbo possesses more than 30 years of professional experience in the medical field. Prior to her arrival at Hodges in October 2017, she served as a staff nurse in the medical surgical unit, a charge nurse in the orthopedic/neurology unit, an RN staff nurse in the neuroscience unit and a disease-specific nurse researcher and case manager at Naples Community Hospital.

In alignment with Hodges’ vision to be recognized for excellence in career-focused inclusive education and community engagement, students in the BSN program receive hands-on training using high fidelity simulation equipment for clinical practice. The program consists of theoretical, laboratory, simulation and clinical experiences that enable students to acquire the knowledge, skills, values and abilities of a professional nurse.

Students can expect a rigorous educational experience that provides individualized attention and state-of- the-art learning technologies, including high fidelity simulation to provide them with real-world learning experiences in a safe environment.

The program also offers excellent clinical experience in a variety of practice settings,” Palumbo explained. Graduates of the program will not only receive a solid foundation, but they will also be equipped with the necessary tools to pursue a post-baccalaureate degree. The program also prepares graduates to take the National Council Licensure Examination– Registered Nurse (NCLEX-RN) and obtain licensure as a registered nurse.

Students entering the workforce will have the knowledge, skills and experience of a professional nurse and be prepared to practice in the dynamic, technology-intensive health care environment. A BSN degree will provide entry into any health care environment throughout the country,” said Palumbo.

The BSN is only offered on Hodges’ Naples campus during the evening and weekend days, and the nursing core classes are designed to be taken as a cohort. The second cohort will begin
September 2018, and the maximum number for a cohort is 24.

To learn more about the program, interested individuals are encouraged to contact Hodges’ Office of Admissions at 800.466.8017 or Maria Vacca in the School of Health Sciences at 239.598.6285.

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