I posted this in the Student Nurses section also but I would like to get any feedback that I can so I am going to post this here also. I am a Nursing Student in Milwaukee, WI and am supposed to graduate in May. This is an email that a fellow student sent to our class, the governor, the senator, and all local news channels. If anyone out there has any suggestions on what we can do, please reply and let me know.
To Whom It May Concern,
I am currently attending the Registered Nursing program at Milwaukee Area Technical College. As we approach the end of the semester, I should be preparing for graduation and a celebration. Unfortunately, the majority of students are preparing to attend an additional semester due to stipulations MATC has added to the program.
It is common knowledge that MATC has always been known for their nursing program. The percentage of students passing the NCLEX Exam has been high. Approximately two years ago, the State required the technical schools
to include new curriculum into the program. Since this new curriculum was added, MATC's percentages have lowered.
Now instead of fixing the problems within the program they are holding the students responsible. They are giving a predictor test in which students must pass with a score of 900 or will be unable to graduate. The students will have three attempts to pass the test. Only two of the attempts will be given before graduation, therefore if the first two attempts are unsuccessful, the student will be unable to participate in graduation. They have also attached the test to one of the classes, making it worth twenty-five points. If the "predictor test" is not passed, the class is not passed even if the student would otherwise have an A in that class. It is also required for the student to pay for each additional test needed.
The "predictor test" is called the Hesi Test. A score of 800 is a 77% which is considered passing for all other courses, and by the Hesi itself. A score of 900 is an 86%.
Hesi states that an individual who scores 70% should be able to pass the NCLEX boards. The Hesi test is very difficult and the requirement of 900 is not right. It should be 800.The results from the first attempt at this test were; 70% failed and 30% passed. Also, the students were divided into two groups, one group being allowed to take the test a week later than the other. MATC did not provide any resources for this exam. They also gave no prior warning of its existence. This is something they added and informed the students of only eight weeks in advance. It was never addressed in the beginning of the program, which if it had been may have influenced which school the student would have chosen. Students already enrolled in the program should have been grandfathered from these requirements. We have contacted all other local colleges and found that MATC is the only college to use this predictor test as a graduation requirement.
All of these expectations were given to my graduating class due to the NCLEX results of the class before me. They have all come about due to the new curriculum required by State. MATC is unable to organize the program with this new curriculum and in return are "passing the buck" onto the students. This causes a financial burden to all students; in relation to the expectation of graduation and new employment status, as well as, the additional cost needed to repeat the test and possibly another semester. Some of the students have investigated the legalities of this situation and did find an article that matched. Two students at a different college were also required to pass a "predictor exam" to graduate; they failed and were denied graduation. They sought legal aid and were able to win the case, because state did not approve.
Our class has tried to go to the appropriate authorities within the school to try and make changes. A petition was signed by 97% of the students. The student body also had a meeting with the Dean and Associate Dean that unfortunately resulted with no changes. The faculty does see the problems involved with these stipulations; however refuse to make any changes for this semester. They are going to make changes for the upcoming semester though. I find that to be discriminating against my class. This is not right.
I am writing to you for I feel my class has exhausted all other possibilities to make changes. I hope it is possible for you to investigate this situation and lend a helping hand to the "hopefully" future nurses. Thank you for your time.