Program Description

Francis Marion University’s Nursing Program is offering an innovative RN-to-BSN degree program to all honorably or generally discharged veterans who hold an associates (two-year program) nursing degree. The program is accredited by the Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing and is supported by the U.S. Department of Veteran’s Affairs.

The new program gives veterans access to FMU’s regionally acclaimed nursing faculty and offers a quick and convenient path to the critical BSN degree. Many vets will be able to obtain their BSN from Francis Marion in 11 months. FMU’s new program helps make that possible by recognizing military training and experience with actual course credits – a first in nursing education.

Why a BSN?

The Institute of Medicine (IOM) has recommended that 80% of nurses have their BSN by 2020 and many healthcare organizations have adopted this as an operating principle. The BSN (four-year) degree is fast becoming an essential resume component to advancement in the nursing field.

Military Experience = Course Credit

Qualified veterans in the FMU RN-to-BSN program for veterans can participate in a one-day simulation experience in lieu of taking NRN 332: Professional Nursing and Nursing Practice, or one-tenth of the entire RN-to-BSN course load.

To acquire the credits, veterans must attend a one-day competency check off for attributes that the qualified veteran participant has acquired during their military training. These competencies include:

  • Delegation
  • Prioritization
  • Cultural humility
  • Professionalism
  • Chain of command
  • Patient safety
  • Cooperation
  • Ethical reasoning
  • Advocacy

Four developed scenarios will evaluate these competencies. Hybrid simulation using high-fidelity mannequins and standardized patients scenarios will include:

  • A triage situation in which the qualified veteran participant will be asked to prioritize and delegate and communicate appropriately with family members of the victim.
  • A substance-abusing co-worker in which the qualified veteran participant will have to display professionalism and follow the appropriate chain of command.
  • An end-of-life (EOL) situation that will entail opposing requests (family vs. patient) and the qualified veteran participants will have to chose and enact the appropriate ethical principle as well as advocate for the patient.
  • A patient situation in which the patient and family speak English as a second language and there is a medication error and the qualified veteran participant will have to display cultural humility and inter-professional cooperation to ensure patient safety.

The one-day experience will be provided on a day in June that will be established well in advance.

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