IC To Begin Offering Traditional 4-Year Nursing Program, Mac Faculty to Join Program

By Benjamin Cox on April 27, 2020 at 9:13am

A photo of one of the initial classes of Passavant Hospital nurses from the early 1900s. MacMurray took over Passavant's program in the 1980s and has regularly been one of the top nursing programs in the state. Illinois College will take over the 4 year nursing program in Fall 2020.

Illinois College is expanding their nursing program to a traditional 4-year bachelor of science track. Beginning in the Fall, IC will offer a four-year Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree on campus. Students will graduate ready to take the national licensure exam to become registered nurses. The track is an addition to the College’s online RN-to-BSN program that launched in 2019.

Illinois College will offer direct entry into the program to high school seniors and is still accepting applications for this fall. Transfer students may also apply. For students transferring from MacMurray College, the IC nursing program will provide a seamless transition to ensure they are able to graduate on time.

Founding Director of the IC Nursing Program Pamela Brown says that MacMurray Nursing Director Angela Pierson will be coming over to help lead the traditional track program. “It happened quickly because MacMurray unfortunately announced they were closing prior to August 1st. It was a need for the community not to lose that nursing program. Angela is coming as coordinator of the traditional track, and hopefully 4 members of her faculty we are hoping will join us.”

Pierson is expected to officially join IC Faculty this August. Brown says that with MacMurray leaving, it created the opportunity for Illinois College to step in to preserve nursing education. “I think there has always been interest at Illinois College to have a traditional program from the student viewpoint. With MacMurray already having one, it’s hard to have 2 programs in the same city. Certainly, with MacMurray having to close, which is so sad for Jacksonville and the related communities, but with that happening, it created an opportunity for Illinois College to preserve that history of nursing education in Jacksonville.”

Brown says that IC will also preserve the ability to have clinicals at Passavant, Memorial Health Systems, and HSHS St. John’s. IC is currently in new candidate status to receive CCNE nursing accreditation. An evaluation visit for the certification is happening this October.

Nursing education in Jacksonville dates back to 1902 with the Passavant School of Nursing, which continued until 1982 when MacMurray took over the school on its campus. Brown says she’s excited for the college to be continuing that long, storied tradition of nursing in the Jacksonville community.