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Wayne State University College of Nursing introduces Veterans Bachelor of Science in Nursing program

July 10, 2015

Wayne State University students who are U.S. military veterans now have access to a new program leading them to a bachelor's in nursing. The Veterans Bachelor of Science in Nursing (VBSN) program will officially launch this fall with a cohort of eight students. 

Geared specifically to military veteran students who are interested in becoming nurses, the program is designed for veterans who have earned at least 30 college credits and maintained an overall 3.0 grade point average. 

Funding for the program, provided by the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services in collaboration with the Department of Defense and Department of Veterans Affairs, totals $1 million over three years. 

VBSN offers assistance in targeting the unique needs of veterans. Academic credit will be awarded for prior health care experience and training, and courses toward the bachelor of science in nursing will build upon veterans' military training and experience.

The accelerated program, which provides for completion of the nursing coursework over 18 months, will include several military veteran instructors and mentors, counseling services, study groups and clinical rotations primarily held at the John D. Dingell VA Medical Center. 

"The potential students represent all of the men and women who have served the United States of America. I am proud to assist veterans as they transition into the next phase of their life," said Sandra Oliver-McNeil, assistant professor in the College of Nursing and VBSN program director. "The College of Nursing at Wayne State University has educated professional registered nurses for more than 60 years. Students in this new program will benefit from our existing stellar curriculum with the added advantage that many VBSN courses will be taught by faculty with military experience." 

The grant covers costs such as faculty, academic advisors and mentors. Students will be responsible for their tuition and related costs. Veterans are encouraged to check with Wayne State's Office of Military Veterans Academic Excellence to explore their education benefits.

"The uniqueness of this accelerated program is that it is veteran-centric," said Ken Smith, veteran outreach specialist in Wayne State's Office of Military Veterans Academic Excellence. "Only veterans can apply and the grant requires our College of Nursing to consider and grant course credit for military medical training so that veterans can graduate faster. In this program, their experience not only adds value in the classroom but it actually counts towards graduation. 

"Wayne State's leadership has demonstrated time and time again the importance of veterans feeling included on our diverse campus," added Smith. "This initiative by the College of Nursing is just another example of the support the university has for its military and veteran community."

Further information about the VBSN program is available at: http://omvae.wayne.edu/vbsn.php

Wayne State University is a premier urban research institution offering more than 380 academic programs through 13 schools and colleges to nearly 28,000 students.