Application deadline for fall is March 21.
By Sergio Medina
The board of trustees of the Alamo Colleges District formally integrated a Bachelor of Science in nursing into its core curriculum policy during its regular meeting Feb. 23 on Zoom.
The bachelor’s degree will be available through this college’s nursing program beginning in the fall.
During discussion by the Policy and Long Range Planning Committee, President Robert Vela said to the board, “We will begin the recruitment of more nursing faculty and a nursing administrator, as well as the first cohort to begin in the fall of 2021.”
In a Zoom interview Feb. 26, Vela said his administration plans to hire four more nursing faculty.
He said SACSCOC, or the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges, will visit sometime during the week of Nov. 15-19 to inspect the program.
SACSCOC accredited this college Dec. 4 to offer the bachelor’s degree in nursing.
Vela said upon the completion of associate level requirements, the nursing bachelor’s degree will require an additional year of 30-hours study.
Nursing Professor Eve Rodriguez said in an interview March 4 applications for the fall close March 21. The college will accept 30 students based on merit.
That means students applying need a minimum GPA of 2.5, be registered nurses and have letters of recommendation, she added.
She said the number of students accepted is expected to steadily increase from 30 to 100 over three years.
“We’re just really excited,” she said. “This is going to give them a good opportunity, for students who have graduated from our program.”
The board also approved an increase in annual stipends for nursing faculty at St. Philip’s and this college.
The increase is contingent upon academic background.
- Faculty members with a bachelor’s in nursing, of whom there are six, will see an increase from $6,000 to a $10,000 stipend.
- Faculty members with a master’s in nursing, of whom there are 36, will see an increase from $9,000 to a $15,000 stipend.
- Faculty with a Ph.D. in nursing, of whom there are 13, will see an increase from $9,000 to a $20,000 stipend.
Vela said the competitive nature of the field, as well as the ability to attract high-quality instructors, requires additional compensation.
He said the addition of the bachelor’s degree will benefit students, allowing them to complete certification, associate and bachelor’s degrees in the same institution without having to transfer elsewhere.
Per the nursejournal.org, the cost of a bachelor’s of science degree in nursing ranges from $40,000-$100,000.
Alamo Colleges full-time tuition is about $1,200 per semester, or $99 per credit hour.
“This is a good step for us at SAC and the Alamo Colleges,” Vela said. “This will be a good model for us in the future to obtain more baccalaureate programs.”
District 1 trustee Joe Alderete said to Vela Feb. 23, “You have now identified the first way that we can get around the transfer of courses to a four-year institution. They (students) can go straight from us, with a bachelor’s, and go into a master’s program.
“Did you all hear that?” he asked the board.
To apply for the bachelor of nursing program, go here.
Go here for more information on the program.