HOUSTON, March 4, 2014 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Officials from online, nonprofit university WGU Texas (texas.wgu.edu) and San Jacinto College announced today the signing of a guaranteed pathway agreement that allows San Jacinto College students and staff to receive application fee waivers and a 5% discount to pursue a bachelor's or master's degree in Nursing at WGU Texas.
The Guaranteed Pathway program includes acceptance into specific WGU Texas RN to Bachelor of Science in Nursing (RN-BSN) or RN to Master of Science in Nursing (RN-MSN) programs when participating in a newly established dual-admission track, built to guide a student along a specific, predetermined program pathway. The Guaranteed Pathway program is in addition to existing statewide transfer agreements and benefits that WGU Texas offers San Jacinto College and other Texas community colleges, through its Finish to Go Further program.
"Establishing this articulation with WGU Texas is truly a win-win—we're making it possible for more of our nursing graduates and staff to get the degrees they need to build their careers and improve their lives, and we're contributing to improving access to quality higher education in our state," said Dr. Brenda Hellyer, Chancellor of San Jacinto College.
Under the agreement, San Jacinto College graduates and staff will receive discounted tuition (for up to two years) toward a bachelor's or master's nursing degree program at WGU Texas, and be eligible for nursing scholarships.
"This articulation provides an opportunity for our graduates to continue to work toward their BSN in an online format, providing for the maximum flexibility of scheduling their time," said Serita Dickey, Dean of Allied Health and Natural Sciences at San Jacinto College (North Campus). "The fact that WGU Texas has a flat-rate tuition without limits to the number of competency units to be completed in a term also is a huge advantage for our students; they can make self-selections about the number of courses to be taken."
According to the Texas Department of State Health Services, the state is facing a shortage of 71,000 nurses by 2020. Add to this the growing complexity and responsibility of services nurses provide, and hospitals and healthcare facilities have growing demand for registered nurses with bachelor's degrees, a requirement among an increasing number of hospitals seeking "magnet" status. The guaranteed pathway agreement will create a faster and more affordable pathway to bachelor's and master's degrees for San Jacinto Colleges' nursing students and staff.
WGU Texas uses a competency-based learning model that allows students to work through study materials on their own schedule and advance when they can demonstrate their knowledge. This approach to learning is ideal for working adults with prior education and work experience. Each student has one-on-one guidance and support from faculty mentors, who help the student stay on track, providing coaching, direction, and academic support. While WGU Texas degree programs are rigorous and challenging, competency-based learning enables students with the time and ability to accelerate their programs, saving both time and money. Tuition for WGU Texas' nursing programs is charged at a flat rate of $3,250 per six-month term, and terms can begin on the first day of any month.
"We are so pleased to have the opportunity to work with San Jacinto College to provide their nursing students and staff pathways to an affordable, accredited post-secondary degree," said Ray Martinez, Chancellor of WGU Texas. "That's really what this partnership is all about: changing lives and strengthening Houston's workforce by providing access to well-respected higher education, through a flexible, affordable, and career-focused pathway.
About San Jacinto College
Surrounded by monuments of history, industries and maritime enterprises of today, and the space age of tomorrow, San Jacinto College has been serving the citizens of East Harris County, Texas, for more than 50 years. The Achieving the Dream Leader College is committed to the goals and aspirations of a diverse population of 30,000 students in more than 200 degree and certificate options, including university transfer and career preparation. Students also benefit from the College's job training programs, renowned for meeting the needs of growing industries in the region. San Jacinto College graduates contribute nearly $630 million each year to the Texas workforce. San Jacinto College. Your Goals. Your College.
Learn more at http://www.sjcd.edu/ or call 281-998-6150.
About WGU Texas
Established in 2011 by the state of Texas in partnership with nationally recognized Western Governors University, WGU Texas is a nonprofit, online university focused on expanding access to quality higher education for Texas residents. WGU Texas offers more than 50 accredited bachelor's and master's degree programs in high-demand fields. Degrees are granted under the accreditation of Western Governors University, which is accredited through the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities (NWCCU). Nursing programs are accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE).*
Learn more about WGU Texas' Guaranteed Pathway Program at http://texas.wgu.edu/guaranteedpathways or call 1-877-214-7011.
*Western Governors University offers nursing programs that are accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (One Dupont Circle, NW, Suite 5380, Washington, DC 20036, 202-877-6791).
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