Sonoma State University’s nursing program recently received two top-ten awards for its registered nursing and graduate nursing programs.
“We have a very cohesive and strong faculty that works really well together, and we all hold the students to a really high standard,” said Dr. Mary Wilkosz, the chair of the nursing department.
Sonoma State’s nursing program was rated number five out of the 126 similar programs in the state for achieving a 98 out of 100 passing rate on the NCLEX. The NCLEX, or the National Council Licensure Examination, is an exam that each college uses to determine whether or not the student is prepared for an entry-level nursing practice.
The graduate program was also rated in the top ten in a different study for a number of things, such as its student services and graduation rate.
But what makes the nursing program stand out among all the other programs at Sonoma State University? Well, according to the faculty and students of the nursing program, it is the people that really set the welcoming and academic atmospheres.
The nursing program is exceptionally difficult to get into and the competition is fierce. The minimum GPA for the program is a 3.0, and a long list of other requirements must be met in order to get in.
Around 400 applications will be sent in vying for a spot in the pre licensure program, although only 24 will be accepted. According to Wilkosz, “Out of the 400 applicants there were maybe close to 200 that met all the requirements. Half of them we didn’t even look at, because there was something missing.”
Currently the program has 48 students, 24 of those students in the pre-licensure program, and they are pushed much harder than the average college student. The idea that the students need to be near-perfect is something that adds to the stress of the program.
Despite the competitive nature in the program, the students do their best to help each other out. With the knowledge their classmates will also apply for the limited 24 seats, they study together, compare notes, and do their best to support one another.
The faculty also supports the students as best they can, despite their challenging courses. They have office hours, sometimes stay after class, and inform the students about tutoring options.
It’s clear the program is competitive and taxing, however the program is outstanding not just because of its high success rates, but also because of its passionate faculty and helpful students.