San Marcos Mercury | Local News from San Marcos and Hays County, Texas

September 22nd, 2009
Texas State nursing school now accepting applications

STAFF REPORT

In 2006, St. David’s Community Health Foundation gave $6 million to Texas State to help establish a school of nursing. In recognition of the donation, Texas State President Denise Trauth announced, at that time, the school would be named for its benefactor. The Texas Legislature provided additional start-up funding.

After several years of planning and building, Texas State recently announced that the new St. David’s School of Nursing, located on the Round Rock campus, is accepting applications for first class of 100 students to be admitted for the 2010 Fall semester.

“It’s very exciting for us. We’ve been receiving so many calls over the past year, it’s great that we can finally say ‘You can apply,'” said Marla Erbin-Roesemann, director of the St. David’s School of Nursing and associate dean of the College of Health Professions. “We will accept 100 students and are anticipating 300-400 applicants.

“We would not be surprised by that many applicants at all. It will be nice for us, giving us the ability to pick the best, the brightest and most passionate applicants,” she said. “We want to make sure that we not only take the students who are most academically prepared, but those with a passion for the profession.”

The application information is available online at www.health.txstate.edu/nursing/admission/Admission-Forms.html.

Only junior-classified applicants who have completed freshman and sophomore level prerequisites will be considered. After applications are reviewed, students will be invited for interviews and the final decisions on admissions will be made by the end of March.

One of the primary motivating factors of the legislature and St. David’s Foundation is to address the nursing shortage in Texas. The national average is 825 nurses per 100,00 population. In Texas, that number is 646.

“St. David’s Foundation is committed to improving health care in Central Texas, and St. David’s School of Nursing is an integral part of that commitment,” said Earl Maxwell, CEO of St. David’s Foundation. “The foundation’s gift will have a significant impact on the healthy future of our community as the students applying for admission in 2010 become nursing professionals at area clinics and hospitals in just a few short years.”

The Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board approved the degree plan and the establishment of a school of nursing in January. The Texas Board of Nursing gave it’s approval in July contingent upon the completion of a dedicated building. Progress now continues on that building, located on the Round Rock Campus, with the roof being recently completed. School of Nursing faculty participated in a “Topping Off” ceremony Sept. 9. where they symbolically signed at beam in the roof structure.

“The contractor tells us the building will be ready for move-in by late spring,” said Dean of the College of Health Professions Ruth Welborn, who completed an initial feasibility study for a nursing program in 2003. “That will give our faculty and staff the opportunity to move into their offices and familiarize themselves with the simulation labs and classrooms before the first students arrive in August.”

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