COLUMBUS, Miss.—As The W this year commemorates the 40th anniversary of its charter nursing class, numbers recently released by the Mississippi Institutions of Higher Learning show its nursing program has grown into the state’s largest.
Among both public and private institutions teaching nursing, The W enrolls the largest number, with 635 students. The next-highest is The University of Southern Mississippi.
“We are very proud of the strength of our programs, the success of our graduates and the reputation that a W nursing education has in the Mississippi health community,” said Dr. Sheila Adams, dean of the College of Nursing and Speech-Language Pathology.
“We know that we have developed rigorous programs that give our graduates the skills they need to make an immediate contribution,” she said. “Our goal is to continue to meet the needs of our state and contribute to the healthcare of our citizens.”
The Annual Report for Mississippi Nursing Degree Programs, issued by IHL’s Office of Academic and Student Affairs, also showed that The W has the largest number of total graduates among public and private schools of nursing, as well as the largest number of RN to BSN graduates in the state.
“We feel that we’re successfully filling a growing need in Mississippi,” Adams said, noting that The W this spring has begun a doctorate of nursing practice program that will give nurse practitioners advanced clinical skills.
This spring, The W also announced a partnership with North Mississippi Medical Center in Tupelo to coordinate a residency program for physician assistants and nurse practitioners. It is believed to be the first such program in the nation to integrate the residency training of both and provide intensive clinical experiences to improve healthcare delivery.
In other specific nursing programs, the IHL report showed:
· The W’s BSN program has a 100 percent pass rate on the national certifying exam, NCLEX, for the past two years;
· The W’s ASN programs pass rate mean for the past three years exceeded the state average for Mississippi;
· The W’s MSN program had the highest completion rates of all MSN programs in the state, both public and private.
Adams said The W is the only school in Mississippi offering all nursing degrees from the associate’s through the DNP. Through its growing online programs, it serves place-bound students around the state.