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VSU Nursing department celebrates 50 years

VSU’s Department of Nursing has taught, healed and medicated students, faculty and staff for 50 years. Now, the time has come to celebrate its anniversary once again.

In the Spring of 1967, it was announced that the Board of Regents had approved a nursing program to be instituted in the fall of the coming 1968 school year.

The four-year baccalaureate program allowed graduates to become fully registered nurses. It was a program Elizabeth Bechtel, then biology professor, believed would open up opportunities to create and increase graduates of a “deficient” program.

As the newly made department was organized Edna May Jones became its first director. Mildred Belcher Pryse, assistant professor and former director of the Hall School of Nursing program, assisted her.

Together, they laid down the foundations of curriculum and academic objectives that have evolved over the years into the more familiar standards we see on campus today.

This beginning allowed for the cooperation between the Nursing program and local hospitals which hailed countless hours of practical and controlled experience for students.

In honor of the history and achievement of so many students throughout the years, Dr. Sherri Noviello, current dean of the nursing department, and the rest of the department staff have made plans to pay respects to the hallowed halls of their steadfast program.

As this past October came to an end, the Department of Nursing invited students to experience the university-based Simulation Labs and Training Encounters. This allows nursing students to gain practical experience while allowing guests to watch nursing students in action.

Dean Noviello said this is the first of many events being planned in celebration of the anniversary.

Written by Payton Fletcher, Staff Writer. 

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