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Loyola AdvantageNursing Career

How Loyola Chicago Addresses the Demand for Nurses with a BSN Degree

Nursing students working on a medical manikin in simulation with text: meeting the nursing demand

Nurses are in high demand across the country—but not just any nurse. As our nation’s healthcare system continues to need more nurses, healthcare employers prefer to hire nurses who hold a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) or higher. Loyola University Chicago helps meets this demand by offering several nursing degree options, including its 16-month Accelerated Bachelor of Science in Nursing (ABSN) program.  

The BSN Backstory

For over a decade, we have seen a push within the healthcare industry to make a BSN the preferred entry degree for professional practice. In 2010, the Institute of Medicine (IOM) published a landmark report: The Future of Nursing: Leading Change, Advancing Health. At the time, 49% of the nurses working in the United States held a BSN. The IOM called for increasing the number with a BSN degree to 80% by 2020.

Now with 2020 behind us, you are probably wondering where the country stands today. In response to the IOM report recommendations, the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, AARP, and the AARP Foundation created the Future of Nursing: Campaign for Action. As of 2018, the campaign shows that 57% of employed nurses in this country held a BSN. Research suggests we should meet the 80% goal by 2029.

The American Association of Colleges of Nursing recognizes a BSN as the minimum education requirement for professional practice.

The Importance of a BSN

According to the American Association of Colleges of Nursing (AACN), employers prefer nurses to hire who hold a BSN because their education gives them the critical thinking and leadership skills that are vital in the profession. Also, studies show that nurses prepared at the baccalaureate level have stronger communication and problem-solving skills. Other research shows that facilities staffed with a higher number of BSN-prepared nurses have better patient outcomes and lower mortality rates. 

nursing students posing for a picture
A Loyola BSN holds value in health care.

The Value of a Loyola Nursing BSN

Loyola University Chicago provides a transformative BSN education that combines Jesuit values and reason with intellectual rigor to graduate competent, compassionate nurses who serve with a commitment to social justice. Its nursing curriculum also emphasizes the importance of inter-professional collaboration and how to work within an interdisciplinary healthcare team that achieves the best possible patient outcomes.  

The goal of a Loyola BSN is to prepare baccalaureate nurses who can:

  • Integrate quality, prevention, safety, and leadership into nursing practice.
  • Provide culturally competent care to individuals and families across the lifespan.
  • Incorporate ethics and legal knowledge into nursing practice.
  • Deliver safe, evidence-based care to patients via inter-professional collaboration.
  • Combine scientific evidence and patient preferences when providing care.
  • Apply information technology to advance nursing practice.
  • Understand the influence government policies have on the healthcare system.

By choosing to earn your ABSN from Loyola Nursing, you will be prepared to sit for the National Council Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses (NCLEX-RN®) with confidence and enter the profession as a practice-ready nurse.

Our 2020 BSN graduates had a first-time NCLEX pass rate of 94%.

Find the Loyola Nursing Program That’s Right for You

Loyola Nursing offers several paths for earning a Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree.

Traditional BSN Program

This four-year BSN program is ideal for high school graduates ready to begin their nursing career. Students enroll in a traditional college experience at our Lake Shore Campus, while getting hands-on experience at world-class clinical sites throughout the city.

In-Person ABSN Program

This 16-month program is a second-degree option for individuals who want to use their non-nursing bachelor’s degree to transition into the nursing profession. Students enrolled in this full-time program complete their fundamental (didactic) courses and nursing labs at the Loyola Health Science Campus in suburban Chicago and gain diverse clinical experience at leading healthcare organization in the Chicago area.  

nursing students completing a lab
Loyola students completing a nursing lab.

Hybrid ABSN Program

This is another 16-month program option for individuals who hold a non-nursing bachelor’s degree.  Students enrolled in this full-time program complete their fundamental (didactic) coursework online, nursing labs at our standalone ABSN site in suburban Downers Grove, Illinois, and gain diverse clinical experience at leading health-care organizations in the Chicago area.   

RN-to-BSN Program 

This online program is for registered nurses who hold an Associate Degree in Nursing or a hospital nursing diploma and want to earn a BSN. The 120-hour curriculum comprises transfer credits, nursing courses, University Core requirements, and a Professional Nursing ePortfolio.

If you decide to continue your education after earning your BSN, Loyola Nursing has a variety of graduate programs and advanced practice certificate options.

Ready to Earn Your BSN?

If you have a non-nursing bachelor’s degree and a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.0, our in-person ABSN program at the Loyola Health Sciences Campus and Hybrid ABSN program in suburban Chicago are among the fastest ways to earn a quality BSN. These accredited programs make a 16-month transition into nursing possible by building on your existing college degree. Both ABSN programs enroll students twice annually—in the fall and spring. Our enrollment advisors review applications when received, so you can expect an admissions decision within a few weeks of applying.

Contact our enrollment team today to determine which ABSN program option is the best fit for you. 

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