Fitchburg State Ranks Fourth in Mass Nursing Programs

By John Plue

Registered Nursing is an online website that is run by registered nurses “who care deeply about the profession and provide the resources future nurses need to succeed.” For three years the Registered Nursing has ranked the best nursing programs to attend in Massachusetts. They study the programs and students’ performances on the NCLEX-RN exam which is used by all state boards of nursing across the country.

Fitchburg State University has been evaluated and, in the end, has been ranked fourth out of 41 schools. Registered Nursing wrote “Fitchburg State University…has a long and distinguished history of nursing education. Experienced, caring faculty guide BSN and MSN students to model health promotion and interventions that improve patients’ quality of life.” Kelsey Martin, a junior in the nursing major at Fitchburg State, stated: “I think the program for nursing at FSU can be set apart from the other nursing schools in Massachusetts because of the clinical opportunities presented to us and the quality of professors.” She also said “Our program here at FSU really embodies the professionalism expected of us in the real world and our professors really strive to have us know not just the what’s but the whys. This is often overlooked in pursuit of a degree because many programs only focus on passing the NCLEX and not on the overall concept of the material.”

Fitchburg was the first public university in Massachusetts to have a nursing program. The Fitchburg State website has a timeline with the first mention of a nursing program in 1943, it explains that the “nursing program begins with cooperative nursing effort with Burbank Hospital” and then in 1962 “nursing program, in conjunction with Burbank Hospital, established on campus.” Fitchburg offers “three undergraduate degree tracks: a four-year Bachelor of Science in Nursing, an accelerated track for LPN to BS in Nursing, and an RN to BS in Nursing program for students with an Associate Degree in Nursing or Diploma and a valid RN license in good standing…The department also offers a Master of Science degree in Forensic Nursing.”

“I enjoy the culture of our [Fitchburg State’s] the most. It’s so small that everyone knows everyone and we all can lean on each other in times of need,” Martin said. This is important. Nurses have a hard job and to create relationships at school can help in the field. It also opens up to different ideas and cultures. Martin comments on what she will have once she finishes the program, “My biggest take away would obviously be my degree, but as for life lesson I’ve learned that it really is okay to ask for help. Often times asking for help is encouraged. There’s no faking it until you make it if you don’t know ask and someone will have the answer.”



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