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Collin College Nursing Among State's Top Programs In Graduation, Licensure

August 24, 2009 – The Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board awarded Collin College’s nursing program a $25,000 grant for having a top graduation and licensure rate. Only Collin College, Stephen F. Austin State University and Texas A&M University-Corpus Christi received this prestigious honor for achieving graduation and licensure rates of 85 percent or above for the 2008 academic year.

Since the Collin College nursing program started in 1990, there have been 732 graduates, who maintained a 95.33 percent pass rate on the NCLEX-RN exam on first attempt. Last year, the nursing program graduated 108 students at a 96.21 percent average.

“Our board challenged Dr. Cary Israel, [Collin College president], Dr. Nell Ard [nursing program director] and our nursing education team to expand our program in light of the nation-wide nursing shortage and to improve quality while doing that,” said Dr. Bob Collins, who chairs the college’s Board of Trustees. “This award recognizes our nursing program’s excellent work. Other programs will now reap the benefits of their outstanding effort.”

The grant will develop a detailed business plan for best practices that other schools can replicate. Any remaining funds can be used to increase enrollment and graduates.

“We are the only associate degree nursing program to be recognized for best practices in retention and graduation as well as licensure success,” President Israel said. “Collin College prides itself in providing our students with a top-quality education, and our nursing program has proven to be among the nation’s elite. We congratulate our nursing faculty and staff for their stellar work that resulted in this coveted recognition.”

According to Dr. Ard, “We have been able to achieve nearly a 90 percent retention/graduation rate while also successfully preparing the student for their initial licensure exam. This honor validates the quality of the nursing program at Collin College as well as the hard work of the nursing faculty and students.”

Collin College serves more than 46,000 credit and continuing education students annually and offers more than 100 degree and certificate programs. The only public college in the county, Collin College is a partner to business, government and industry, providing customized training and work force development.