I am currently enrolled in a newer BSN program in Texas. I am the second cohort in the program and will graduate in May of 2013. Recently there has been talk among my classmates about our programs accreditation status. The program was approved by the Texas Board of Nursing, however we have not yet been granted accreditation from an accrediting agency. Our Dean informed us that as of now we have candidate status with NLN and are "expected to be granted full accreditation in 2013." She did not say if that was before or after our graduation. My questions are:
1) If we are not accredited by the time I need to start applying for jobs and/or internships, will I run into trouble getting hired?
2) If we are not accredited by the time I graduate but the program is eventually granted accreditation, will I be considered a graduate of an accredited program?
3) How important is accreditation to larger hospitals when they are looking to hire you?
PLEASE HELP! THANKS!
Aug 3, '12
I graduated from an unaccredited program in Oklahoma and was able to be hired in Texas. However, I also had four years of experience as an LVN and some connections with people who are responsible for hiring, and these things might have given me an edge when seeking RN positions.
Aug 3, '12
I was accepted in a just opened program (private university, ADN program transitioning to BSN) which was at that moment under probationary accreditation by the state. I was concerned about it and called our state's BON. They said that, providing my NCLEX is passed:
1) no problem within the home state from the beginning;
2) no problem in other states as soon as the program fully accredited by state BON, which "should" happen before the first class graduation date;
3) NLN accreditation is not mandatory, but "some" employers might "prefer" grads from such programs;
4) in any case, if I want to move to some other state, I should contact the BON of this state as soon as possible so that they could "verify" everything they want;
5) in case I would like to go to Masters' (which I will do), courses taken before the program was fully accredited may have to be re-taken.
I thought it was too much of uncertainity for me and went to other place. I see grads from this program now finding jobs locally just like everybody else, mostly basing on where clinicals were taken, networking, grades, experience, etc. Nobody really cares where they came from.
Aug 3, '12
Accreditation has never been an issue with my employment. As a matter of fact, no employer has ever taken an interest in the name of my nursing program. They have always shown an interest in my nursing work experience and the status of my license. Any way you approach the situation, it is now too late to avoid attending this program. Best to hope for the best.
Aug 3, '12
My ADN program from a community college was state Board of Nursing (BON) approved, but not NLNAC or CCNE accredited. Some employers require these accreditations as stated in their job descriptions or announcements. The VA, for one states this. However, I recently applied for a VA job and sent an email to the local HR manager explaining my ADN program's lack of accreditation. He replied back that the hiring manager can request to "waive" this requirement if they think the candidate is otherwise well-qualified. He encouraged me to continue to apply for VA RN jobs.
In Minnesota, the Mayo Clinic requires the above accreditations, but again, I would contact the HR department of any employer you are interested in and ask about it. As with the VA, they might be willing to waive this requirement in certain circumstances. (Probably a good rule of thumb with any job eligibility question...before ruling the job out, call or email and ask if you are eligible to apply!)
Aug 5, '12
My understanding of the accreditation issue, based on how CCNE explained it to me, is that if you are a student at the time the school is undergoing the accreditation process, then once the school is accredited, you would be considered as having graduated from an accredited program. But if you graduated before the school applied for accreditation or if the school doesn't get accredited, you're out of luck.
Not sure if the NLN does things differently...why not drop them a note and ask? That's what I did with the CCNE. The NLN would also be able to verify if your program does indeed have applicant status, as schools can sometimes be notorious for stretching the truth about such things in order to get enrollment numbers up.
Sep 5, '12
Thank you everyone for responding! I'm hoping it wont be a problem, but like caliotter3 said, its a little too late now! Heres for hoping for the best!
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