Online nursing program earns praise, recognition

Rebecca Cross, Managing Editor

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On Jan. 13, a group of professional nurses, educators, writers and editors acknowledged FMU’s online RN to BSN program as one of the best online classroom experiences provided by a university in the U.S.

RNtoBSN.org, a website dedicated to furthering education for new and established nurses, helps nursing students find the resources needed to earn a BSN. The website reviewed nearly 400 programs before choosing FMU as a top contender.

“[The award] speaks volumes for what Francis Marion provides for their students,” Dr. Rhonda Brogdon, assistant professor of nursing, said. “[FMU provides] a good liberal arts education offering many avenues of education delivery, whether that’s in a traditional or online setting.”

This is the first award that FMU’s online RN to BSN program has received.

According to Brogdon, one thing that stands out about FMU’s online program is the staff.

“We have the best faculty,” Brogdon said. “All of the faculty are certified in delivering online education.”

FMU nursing faculty strives to assist online nursing students in a more personal setting as well while being available online

“We do let our students know that even though the program is online, we are here for them,” Brogdon said. “They still have the opportunity to come and sit with us face to face and talk about any concerns that they may have.”

While each instructor differs in the services that they provide, many professors are available to chat or do video calls with students.

Since its launch in 2010, 118 students have graduated through the program.

All students utilizing the online RN to BSN program are registered nurses who are going back to school to obtain their bachelor’s degree.

Nursing students that choose to study through FMU’s online program are from a variety of backgrounds and stages of life. Some have recently earned an associate degree before beginning the program while others have been out of school for several semesters.

“It takes dedication, preparation and determination at anything worth having in life,” Brogdon said. “Going back to school is never easy, but earning a Bachelor of Science Degree in Nursing from Francis Marion University’s RN to BSN online program challenges you to grow personally and professionally.”

Assignments for online nursing students during each semester include participating in online discussion boards, individual work, peer responses and group projects. Each semester is divided into five blocks and each block is three weeks long.

The majority of students are from the Pee Dee region. However, students from surrounding areas such as Charleston have also used the online program.

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