I just graduated a month ago from Bellarmine's accel program. The requirements aren't that unreasonable (Admission Requirements
) and the impression I got in the admissions process was that if you met the requirements, you were pretty much in.
That being said... yes, a LOT of people dropped out in the beginning. Folks realize pretty quickly if they're not a good fit for the program. It moves fast, requires the commitment of a full-time job (plus some!), and it is pretty rigorous academically -- just because it's accelerated doesn't mean they skimp on material!
The best way to prepare for that first couple weeks? Honestly? You just really have to figure out if you can really commit to the program and put your life on hold for a year. You absolutely need a support system -- if you have to live with your parents, do it. Most of the folks who dropped out were just not in a good place to be able to focus on school.
As for the cost, they don't do any scholarships. You're stuck with loans. And if you want to work as a nursing aide somewhere PRN, you can, just know that you probably won't be doing more than one shift every couple of weeks. In other words, you are probably not going to be able to work enough to get you anything more than pocket money.
All in all, I really am grateful for this program. I found some really amazing friends that I wouldn't trade for anything. I had some great professors (had some real duds too, but you just have to suck it up in those classes). The program prepares you very well for the NCLEX (no one from my cohort has failed yet, at least) and the hospitals here LOVE Bellarmine accel grads -- nearly every single accel student I graduated with had a job offer before graduation. Those that didn't were applying out of state.
Hope that helps. Any other questions, let me know.