Meeting of the Board of Regents | April 2010
THE STATE EDUCATION DEPARTMENT / THE UNIVERSITY OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK / ALBANY, NY 12234
TO: The Honorable the Members of the Board of Regents
FROM: Frank Muñoz
SUBJECT: Master Plan Amendment: State University of New York College of Technology at Alfred, Bachelor of Science (B.S.) Degree in Nursing
DATE: April 6, 2010
STRATEGIC GOAL: Goal 2
Issue for Decision (Consent Agenda)
Should the Board of Regents approve an amendment to the master plan of the State University of New York that authorizes the State University of New York College of Technology at Alfred to offer a nursing program leading to the Bachelor of Science degree in Nursing?
Reason(s) for Consideration
Required by State Statute.
This question will come before the full Board at its April 2010 meeting where it will be voted on and action taken.
A master plan amendment is required because this would be the institution’s first Bachelor of Science degree program in the disciplinary area of the health professions.
The State University Board of Trustees, at its January 19, 2010 meeting, adopted a resolution to amend the State University Master Plan to authorize the State University of New York College of Technology at Alfred to offer instruction leading to the Bachelor of Science (B.S.) degree in Nursing.
The College of Technology at Alfred currently offers baccalaureate degrees in architectural technology, business administration (three specialty areas), construction management technology, digital media and animation, engineering technology (six specialty areas), forensic science technology, human services management, information security and assurance, information technology (six specialty areas), and manufacturing technology.
The proposed program supports the SUNY College of Technology at Alfred’s mission to provide career-focused education that is supported by the arts and sciences. The program’s educational objectives are designed to increase students’ expertise in the discipline of nursing, while also continuing to develop critical technical knowledge and skills associated with information management and its applications to healthcare delivery systems.
The proposed program is an upper-division bachelor’s degree completion program for registered nurses who are graduates of an associate degree nursing program. The program will require completion of 63 semester hours divided as follows: 27 semester hours of nursing course work; 18 semester hours of general education course work; 12 semester hours of general electives course work; 3 semester hours of nursing electives; and 3 semester hours for a required biological sciences course. Lower-division course work accepted in transfer must include a minimum of 30 semester hours in nursing; 8 semester hours in anatomy and physiology; a laboratory course in microbiology; and courses in communications, literature, psychology and sociology. Courses will be offered in a hybrid format with students attending classes on campus for two weekends each semester and completing the remainder of course requirements through online interactions. The College offers three associate degree programs completely online, as well as selected baccalaureate courses. The program’s rural health framework is incorporated as a concept throughout the nursing courses. Clinical practice agreements have been developed with three rural counties’ Departments of Health.
In addition to being a graduate of an associate degree nursing program with appropriate lower-division prerequisite course work, each student must successfully pass the registered nurse licensure examination by the end of the first semester of the program. Projected enrollment in the first year is 10 full-time and 20 part-time students. By the fifth year of operation, the anticipated enrollment is 20 full-time and 40 part-time students. A large percentage of the applicants are expected to be graduates of the College of Technology at Alfred’s associate degree nursing program that was first registered in 1965.
Oversight for the proposed program will be provided by a Director who is doctorally- prepared and has considerable experience in baccalaureate nursing education. The College created three new tenure track positions to assist with development and staffing of the program. One position has been filled by a doctorally prepared individual with extensive experience in baccalaureate nursing education. Among the faculty teaching in the associate degree program, one is enrolled in a doctoral program and the remaining eight faculty have master’s degrees in nursing. These faculty have expressed interest in being mentored to teach in the proposed program in areas related to their clinical and academic expertise.
Physical resources in the Allied Health Building are undergoing a major renovation for which $2.5 million has been budgeted. Renovation plans include an upgrade for the clinical skills laboratory along with purchase of additional assessment equipment, the principal clinical materials needed for the proposed program. The annual budget allocation for new faculty is approximately $100,000 over the first 5 years of the program. Library resources, both print materials and electronic databases, including SUNYConnect, are sufficient to meet the educational objectives of the proposed program. Budget projections list $2,000 annual allocations for the purchase of any additional library materials for the proposed program.
No other SUNY institution in the western region of the Southern Tier offers a similar hybrid format for an upper-division bachelor’s degree program in nursing. Daemen College and D’Youville College, each with its main campus in Buffalo, offer similar programs in the region. However, Daemen and D’Youville are private colleges and the proposed program would be the only similar program in the area offered by a public college and, thereby, providing more options for students. Completion of the baccalaureate degree in nursing will qualify graduates for supervisory roles and roles that have a greater degree of autonomy.
The College intends to begin the process for accreditation of the bachelor’s degree program by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education in 2012.
A canvass was conducted of all institutions in the Western and Genesee Valley Regions. The only concern received was from Elmira College, which focused principally on the negative impact another nursing program would have on increasingly scarce clinical resources. Although clinical placements are becoming increasingly difficult to obtain for traditional licensure-qualifying programs, the proposed program is an upper-division program for registered nurses who will be completing requirements for the bachelor’s degree in nursing. As such, the amount of clinical contact hours is limited and typically occurs in community health/public health settings as opposed to a licensure-qualifying program where experiences occur largely in acute care settings. In keeping with its rural health focus, the proposed program has clinical placement agreements with the Allegany, Cattaraugus and Livingston County Health Departments for the majority of students’ clinical experiences. The nearest county border for any of these counties is over 50 miles from Elmira.
It is recommended that the Board of Regents approve the proposed master plan amendment of the State University of New York authorizing the College of Technology at Alfred to offer the Bachelor of Science degree program in Nursing. This amendment will be effective until April 20, 2011, unless the Department registers the program prior to that date, in which case the Master Plan Amendment shall be without term.
Timetable for Implementation
If the Board of Regents approves the master plan amendment, the Department will register the program following gubernatorial approval, and the institution will proceed to recruit and enroll program students.