Tuesday, January 12, 2016

Second class of BASE students earns nursing degrees in accelerated format through OU-C, Adena partnership

Graduates of the second class of the BASE (Baccalaureate of Science in Nursing: Accelerated Direct Entry Second Degree Education) program are ready to pursue careers best aligned with their personal and professional ambitions. 

The five-member class recently completed degree requirements of the program, which is a unique partnership between Oho University-Chillicothe and Adena Health System.

The innovative endeavor, which was launched in the fall of 2012, allows students who hold at least a bachelor's degree to pursue accelerated study toward a bachelor’s degree in nursing (BSN). Upon completion of the program, graduates are eligible to take the NCLEX (National Council Licensure Examination) exam, leading to licensure as a Registered Nurse (RN) and entry into professional nursing practice.

“I always thought about going into nursing, and this offered that opportunity. It was helpful to be able
to complete the program in a condensed period,” said Betsy Irwin of Athens, who earned a bachelor’s degree in exercise science and biology from Trine University in Indiana in 2013.

“After graduating with my first bachelor’s degree, I worked in a gym for a while, but I thought nursing might be a better fit for me. My sister was in the previous cohort, and she recommended this program. I want to take care of people, and there are so many different career opportunities in nursing, which appeals to me.”

Kelli Jo Fultz was also looking to make a career change that better fit her abilities and aspirations. “I previously worked at a daycare center and as a technician at the Adena facility in Waverly. This is the right fit for me. I have been a patient with diabetes, so I have
been able to view the health-care system from that perspective. I know what patients want from a nurse, and I want to be the type of nurse who helps people and makes a difference.” Fultz, a Chillicothe native, earned her bachelor’s degree in biology from Shawnee State University in 2014.

Other members of the current graduating class include:

•    Susan Durley, nutrition and industry degree, The Ohio State University.
•    Jess Jordan, exercise science and management degree, University of Wisconsin-Parkside.
•    Jacqueline Whittle, biology and sports & exercise degree, University of Rio Grande.

The curriculum is based on the traditional BSN program, with course enhancements for accelerated study. The curriculum also allows for master’s degree coursework that can be transferred to any Master of Science in Nursing program.

Many classes were offered in the PACCAR Medical Education Center on the campus of the Adena Medical Center as well as some on the OU-C campus.

Students in the program need to demonstrate focus and dedication. It is a demanding endeavor, with students taking an aggressive plan of study consisting of 10 to 19 academic hours per semester, plus clinical experiences, over five semesters.

It has also been a successful endeavor. In fact, the 15 graduates of the first class of the BASE program achieved a 100 percent pass rate on the NCLEX exam.

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