Questions about Accelerated UMC Program

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    Hey everyone,

    First off, I hope everyone and their family have survived the hurricane with no or minimal damage, and secondly I wanted to see if anyone had any experience with UMC's accelerated program. I just finished my degree in Biological Sciences, and decided on nursing. My questions concern how many spots are available, average GPA, and any other helpful advice.
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  4. 0
    Quote from soloduck
    Hey everyone,

    First off, I hope everyone and their family have survived the hurricane with no or minimal damage, and secondly I wanted to see if anyone had any experience with UMC's accelerated program. I just finished my degree in Biological Sciences, and decided on nursing. My questions concern how many spots are available, average GPA, and any other helpful advice.
    Actually, I thought about doing UMC's accelerated program. I just graduated with my Bachelor's. I talked to an advisor at another school about accelerated programs. He said that there are only a few in the U.S. He also stated that you would literally sleep and breathe nursing. There is NO downtime. You go to class Mon-Fri from 8-4 p.m like a job. You will not have time to work a job because when you are out of class, you will have to study. Also, even during Christmas you only have two or three days off for the holidays. You even go to school during the summer. When I say there is NO downtime, it is exactly that! :zzzzz

    Also, the program is very intense because you are cramming two years worth of material into 1 year. Also, I have spoken to a seasoned nurse on another forum and she didn't suggest doing an accelerated program for the simple fact that you will not be experienced with clinical skills. They go through the skill training so fast during an accelerated program, and when you graduate you will just be thrown into a floor with no experience. You will be like a deer in headlights UNPREPARED. Even though they have orientations for new graduates at hospitals, it is still not enough training. Some of the nurses that go through a 4 year BSN program are sometimes on a learning curve when they are new to a floor, but an accelerated student will be CLUELESS! If you are going to go into nursing, I suggest you go through a program that will prepare you for all facets of nursing. I'm not sure if they will be able to do that with an accelerated program because everything is rushed. Anyway, to each it's own. I just know that I like to have a social life outside of the classroom, and I know that the accelerated program wouldn't leave time for that because all you will do is study nursing day and night. Also, Jackson is a very expensive area. If you aren't married or living with your parents, it might be difficult to be able to pay rent while you are in school. Especially if you want to stay in a nice area. (Such as Ridgeland, Madison, Flowood, or Brandon) I wouldn't suggest anyone to stay in West Jackson or any neighborhoods near the UMC area. UMC is near the hood, and I'm speaking the truth! UMC does not have housing for their students anymore. So you would have to find a place to stay. Those are some of the factors you have to consider when choosing UMC as your choice. Another thing, the Accelerated program only has one admission term and that is during the summer.
    Last edit by vanillavirtue on Sep 4, '08
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    I have been reading allnurses for months but this post motivated me to finally join. I am proud to say I graduated August 1st as a member of the 2nd class from UMC's Accelerated Program. I'm also proud to say I just passed NCLEX (in 75 questions).

    UMC started the Accelerated Program using a grant in the fall of 2006. The first class had 5 students. My class started with about 18; 10 of us graduated. However, all who dropped out or failed did so as a result of classes we took with the "traditonal" students. They have 24 in the current class. The grant runs out this year but the program should be ready to operate without grant money.

    The program is 15 months. The admission deadline is in January. Classes begin in June and go to the following August. During the first summer you take classes with the traditional students. Starting in the fall you begin a group process of learning called "problem based learning". This process is what enables you to cover content faster. You also do some of the frills classes mostly independent study (management, research, community). You do have to be personally motivated and mature to complete this process. You can't work!!! I got by on financial aid. But except for a few weeks here and there I don't think I was ever anymore stressed or busy than a traditional student. Nursing school is hard no matter how you do it. The faculty at UMC are great! In the accelerated program you get a lot of personal attention. (We were taught one class by the dean!)

    Clinicals in the Accelerated Program are done mainly through "preceptors". These are nurses (BSN with at least 3 years of experience) at UMC. You do most of your clinicals with them. You get one on one attention and actually get to work as a part of the unit. This gives you much better experience than in a group of 10 students with one professor who may not have worked on a floor in years! During my clinicals, I did a lot of foleys, in and out caths, trach care, blood draws, tube feedings etc (on real people, not simulations). I even participated (helped document, fetched supples etc) in two codes. I didn't start many IV's but that was because I had a lot of patients with PICCs or Ports. My first days as a new nurse haven't been easy but skills wise I feel much more prepared than many new grads. My first day on the job I was ready to hang IV's, draw up meds etc etc.

    As far as UMC being in the "hood"..... I never felt unsafe. UMC's campus security is a police force and they are really good. Also the atmosphere is friendly; people look out for each other. We did do some clinicals at a community clinic and a school clinic in what some people would consider the "hood". However, I really enjoyed my patients there and again I never felt unsafe. I don't know about living expenses in Jackson, I drive in from an outside area.

    As you can tell I had a great experience so I'm pretty loyal. Of course there are downsides (bad preceptors, uniforms, hard tests, classmates who don't participate in PBL, etc). But again nursing school is hard no matter how you do it and I'm very glad I did it this way!!

    Anyone who is interested should visit: http://son.umc.edu/academics/baccala..._overview.html
    Last edit by HappyBunnyNurse on Sep 20, '08 : Reason: grammar
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  6. 0
    I have been doing alot of research about their program as well. My main concern is that when I earned my first degree I was not serious enough and my GPA reflected that. I am very interested in becoming a nurse, but I am afraid that my GPA and degree (the field is totally unrelated to nursing) will cause my application not to even be looked at because I have under a 3.0. I am considering just going back and doing a traditional BSN program. Any suggestions/thoughts would be appreciated!
  7. 0
    To HappyBunny Nurse,

    OMG! I wanted to go to nursing school at UMC for a while. I was always discouraged b/c there was no Accelerated program. I am from Mississippi. I graduated from St. Andrew's and went to college out of state. Anyway, long story short, I finally discovered UMC finally has an accelerated program! So, I started taking pre reqs last January and finally got them all done. I have a 3.3 overall GPA and a 3.9 on Pre reqs. I did pretty well on the Hesi as well. How competitive was the admission process for you? Just curious. CONGRATS on graduating!!! I have heard GREAT things about accelerated programs due to the fact that most students are more dedicated, motivated and mature. Any help would be greatly appreciated! I just mailed off my application and so...now I wait!!!! Thanks!
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    Well since I started this thread, I figured I would give some feedback. I did not qualify for the accelerated program. Thanks to slacking at a younger age, my overall gpa finished at 2.97. However, this may be beneficial to some about the Hesi. It is extremely easy I finished with a 94 percent, but still would not be considered for the accelerated program. I thought the math was extremely easy because you could calculate everything. Chemistry was basic, the a&p part was sporadic, as a matter of fact I had 5 questions asked about the Ear. I only struggled on vocabulary, but someone told me that most of the words were covered in the hesi study guide.

    I honestly am a little upset about the 3.0 GPA because my degree was in biology, and I feel that I scored well on the Hesi. Compared to the group that tested with me I was an average of 15 percent higher in all. I just wish they would put emphasis on what your degree is in.
    Last edit by soloduck on Jan 9, '09
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    And one more thing, My prereqs were at a 3.6, but thankfully south alabama has a prior degree program that is actually the same length, and they rank by your prerequisites,

    Good luck to all that applied.
  10. 0
    KtotheK,
    The admissions process was pretty easy for me because there were so few applicants in 2007. I remember we were all called up for an interview/tour in Jan or Feb. In 2007, everybody that got called for the interview was in. We got lots of details about the program and I think the intent was to kind of scare you off if you weren't really commited. Now that the word has gotten out and there are lots of applicants it may be a little different. I don't know if the interview still means you are in or not. Hopefully you will hear soon. Good Luck!
  11. 0
    Happybunnynurse,

    Thanks so much for the response! I see you graduated when I should have. I was interested in accelerated programs in 2007, but did not know UMC had one at the time. I am from MS but was living in Florida. How did you feel about the intensity of the program? I am so nervous that I will not get in. I really want this. What was your previous degree in? Are you from MS? Sorry for all the questions. I am just glad to find someone on here who has attended UMC's accelerated program. Thanks!
  12. 0
    Soloduck,

    Have you looked into the traditional program? Your GPA is competitive for it. I believe they are looking for a 2.5. 2.97 is not soooo bad. I have heard of people with worse getting accepted into accelerated programs. Congrats on the 94 on the HESI!!! I got a 90. If UMC is anything like some of the other schools I have looked into they award points for the HESI scores with a 90-100% receiving the same amount of points. Or they will use the HESI in order to break an otherwise tie between two applicants. I was a little miffed since they did not require BIO and Chemistry as pre reqs and then they tested us on them. I did take Micro Biology I and II in 1998 and made A's in both. As far as Chemistry is concerned, I did not do as well. I did score better than the average and was considered satisfactory but I could have done much better if I had taken a college level chemistry course. I took Chemistry at St. Andrew's in 1995!!! Ok. that was 14 years ago! How much could I possibly have remembered?! I do think it was a little unfair to test on chemistry knowledge and have that score be a determining factor on admittance to the program. That is like giving a person a nursing test before going to nursing school and then not letting them in b/c they fail. Makes no sense to me. I would have gladly taken a chemistry class but chose to save that 300 dollars since it was not required.

    You will be fine! If you really want to go to the accelerated program and you are in Mississippi take some classes at Holmes community college. That way you can raise your GPA. Take like 3 or 4. You could even do online ones. If you make A's this should boost your GPA to a 3.0. Plus, I don't think that grades are all they look at. Your HESI score is good for a year and VERY competitive!! I know you are frustrated but it is not the end of the road. Unless you want it to be. As far as the degree goes, the reason why it is a second degree program and they don't look at the specific degree is b/c it is designed that way. It is a tool to attract people from different backgrounds into nursing. If they looked at specific majors and gave prefrence to those who majored in the sciences, then it would not be a program to attract people who otherwise would not apply. Make sense? Hang in there! You have a good shot of getting in if you just have a little patience. This is not the only year they are accepting students. I have been working on pre reqs since last January btw. Nursing school preparations take some time. Plus, you are only 22. You have plenty of time to get into a program. I am 30 and ready to get married and have kids. So...stay positive!


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