Edison nursing program now candidate for accreditation
Bachelor of Science in Nursing program on track to be accredited
Edison nursing program one step closer to accreditation. Video by fox4now.comvideo
FORT MYERS - A month after Fox 4 discovered Edison State College's Bachelor of Science in nursing program was not accredited the school is now one step closer to making that happen.
"Our students deserve the best degree that we can offer them," said Kristen Zimmerman, the dean of program development. "And we take this very, very seriously."
The college's prestigious BSN program is now officially on track to be accredited. Officials announced Monday that they are now a "candidate" with the National League of Nursing Accrediting Commission, which already accredits the nursing program's associate degree.
"When you're a candidate," said Zimmerman, "that means that you meet preliminary criteria that's established by that agency."
According to the NLNAC Web site, programs become candidates based on their "potential" to achieve accreditation.
Accreditation isn't mandatory but many graduate schools require it for admission. Despite concerns by at least one student, who was turned down by several graduate programs, Zimmerman says most students who completed the BSN program have not had trouble getting into grad schools.
"At this time it's been very limited," said Zimmerman, "in terms of students who have not been accepted into their graduate school of choice."
She says at least 16 grad schools - in and out of state - are accepting Edison's BSN students, even without the national accreditation.
So what is the college doing now to ensure that the BSN program meets the requirements for accreditation?
"Our standards and rigor of our curriculum have always been in line with what the accreditation standards," said Zimmerman. "It's our job to prove that."
The college now has to prove that to the accreditors who are planning an on-site visit next year. A vote could happen as early as next spring.
"And you're confident next year the program will be accredited?," asked Fox 4 reporter Matt Grant.
"That's our plan," said Zimmerman.
Once the BSN program becomes accredited, anyone who graduates after that date will graduate with that national accreditation stamp.
However, it will not be retroactive.
Matt Grant, Reporter