Rappahannock Community College is proud to announce the newest addition to our nursing program pathways — the Associate of Arts and Sciences Degree: Pre-BSN Specialization. This new degree is designed for those who want to earn a Bachelors of Science in Nursing (BSN). Starting at RCC, students begin earning the credits and knowledge necessary to transfer to any number of four-year bachelors degree programs.
Dr. Charles Smith, Dean of Health Sciences at RCC, says that this degree was created to align with the needs of universities’ BSN programs across the state. Smith is a member of a statewide steering committee that has investigated common pathways for associate degree nurses to transfer to four-year colleges.
“All of the baccalaureate programs share many common courses. This Pre-BSN program was designed around their needs for courses to prepare to transfer,” says Smith.
The Pre-BSN is a 62-credit, general education transfer degree, meaning that students will earn all of their general education requirements over two years.
The Pre-BSN curriculum is designed for several groups of students. Those are:
- Students who are in high school Dual Enrollment programs — meaning that they are earning college credit for classes taken while in high school
- Students who have graduated high school who do plan to take a few years at home to do prerequisites
- Registered nurses who graduated from associate degree or diploma nursing programs
- Students who are currently enrolled in our nursing program who wish to continue their education immediately upon graduation
Smith says the Dual Enrollment option is especially attractive for students in local high schools who have their sights set on earning a BSN.
“If you are planning a career in nursing and choose to do a BSN program, such as at VCU, JMU or ODU, or any other four-year college, you can begin your studies with us through Dual Enrollment,” says Smith. “Once you get out of high school, you can complete the degree with us either on campus or online and transfer those credits immediately to a baccalaureate program.”
Smith notes that the entry requirements for BSN programs statewide are very competitive for pre-licensure students. Usually, this means there are more applicants than seats at four-year schools. He says then that students who decide to come to RCC will have the prerequisites completed — which will give the RCC student an advantage over many other folks.
More information and registration requirements are available at our website — www.rappahannock.edu/pre-bsn .
“We have lots of options for many types of students,” says Smith. “As I tell everyone, RCC should be your first stop when investigating anything nursing related. We have excellent opportunities, and we are all here to help you succeed.”