University of Wisconsin–Madison

Applications Now Open for New Accelerated Undergraduate Nursing Program — applications close Oct. 1, 2017

September 1, 2017 — The UW–Madison School of Nursing is accepting applications for its new accelerated baccalaureate nursing program beginning Sept. 1, 2017. Applications close Oct. 1, 2017.

The campus-based, face-to-face program will enroll a cohort of 32 second-degree students who will begin coursework in May 2018 for the twelve-month, full-time, year-round program. Upon graduation, students will have achieved their Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) and be fully prepared to sit for licensure to practice as registered nurses.

“We are excited to open our accelerated nursing degree program to enroll more qualified students and to increase the number of bachelor’s-prepared nurses who will promote health throughout the state,” said Dean Linda Scott.

The program is designed for students who already hold a degree in a different discipline.

Scott says that in order to meet the needs of our aging population and the demands of our ever-evolving health system, the Institute of Medicine recommends increasing the percentage of practicing nurses with a BSN to 80 percent by 2020.

“On average, 20 percent of our current students are pursuing nursing as a second career,” said Scott. “The accelerated program provides students who hold a degree in another field the shortest path to professional nursing practice—with all of the quality and rigor expected from the University of Wisconsin–Madison.”

Students in the accelerated program follow the same curriculum and are held to the same academic standards as students in the UW–Madison’s traditional undergraduate program. The time to degree is shorter because the program runs through the traditional summer and winter breaks.

Another benefit for developing the workforce is that shifting some students to the accelerated program opens seats in the traditional program for undergraduates seeking their first degree.

The widespread nursing shortage is well established. The Wisconsin Center for Nursing’s 2013 workforce report projects a statewide nursing shortfall of nearly 20,000 by 2035. With 86 percent of UW–Madison School of Nursing graduates living and practicing in the state, graduating more UW–Madison nurses via an expedited program will more rapidly address the problem and positively impact the health care needs of Wisconsin residents. “From a workforce perspective, this program is invaluable,” said UW–Madison Provost Sarah Mangelsdorf. “The new accelerated degree program will enable us to produce more nurses, more quickly.”

Program Coordinator Wendy Crary adds that employers welcome the life experience and ambition that accelerated-degree graduates bring to the workplace. “These are highly motivated students,” Crary said. “They possess a maturity, focus, and professionalism that expedite their transition into nursing practice and enable them to make immediate contributions as members of the provider team.”

In addition to the accelerated and traditional undergraduate BS-Nursing degrees, the UW–Madison School of Nursing offers an online “BSN@Home” completion program for registered nurses with an associate’s degree. The school also offers a doctor of nursing practice (DNP) degree, PhD program for nurses interested in research and academic careers, graduate-level clinical nurse specialist, mental health and nurse educator certificates, and a joint BS-MPH degree offered with the University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health.

For more information on the school’s academic programs, please contact Karen Mittelstadt, assistant dean for academic programs, at mittelstadt@wisc.edu or 608-263-5284.

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