University of Hawaii at Hilo Nursing School Review


The University of Hawaii at Hilo (UHH, or UH Hilo) is part of the state university system of Hawaii. It is not a large school. It serves approximately 4,000 students, and offers thirty-six undergraduate majors, along with ten graduate programs. It takes pride in its small class sizes, percentage of full-time professors, and its hands-on approach to learning. These qualities that the school emphasizes are especially important when it comes to the study of nursing.

Nursing students need one-on-one time with instructors and hours of practical experience. The University of Hawaii at Hilo offers just this through its nursing programs, which are accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission.

Bachelor of Science in Nursing

The University of Hawaii at Hilo offers a traditional Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) program, preparing students to take the National Council Licensing Exam for Registered Nurses (NCLEX_RN). The program consists of 120 credit hours in total. Students spend the first two years taking prerequisite courses and general education classes required by the university. After completing these, they may apply to the nursing program. If accepted, they spend two years taking nursing classes and completing clinical rotations. The program focuses in particular on training prospective nurses to deliver care in a culturally sensitive manner.

Bachelor of Science in Nursing – RN to BSN

A non-traditional BSN program is also available at the University of Hawaii- Hilo for Registered Nurses (RN) who hold a diploma or Associate of Science in Nursing (ASN) degree. An RN who holds a diploma (or has a degree from a foreign country) must take the National League for Nursing Acceleration Challenge Exam II in order to be eligible for admission. The program consists of at least fifty-four credit hours, thirty of which apply to the university’s general education requirements and twenty-four of which apply to the nursing program. Students may pursue the RN to BSN program either full-time or part-time.

Doctor of Nursing Practice – MSN to DNP

As with the BSN program, the University of Hawaii at Hilo’s Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) program focuses on transcultural nursing. With this special focus in mind, it trains nurses to be leaders and educators in the healthcare field, and to impact patient care, healthcare administration, and healthcare policies, as well as train a new generation of nurses. The MSN to DNP program is open to RNs who hold a Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) degree. The program trains students to become Family Nurse Practitioners (FNP), with a specialization in gerontology, transcultural nursing, rural health care, or evidence-based practice. A nurse with an MSN degree only needs to commit to thirty-four credit hours. The course sequence generally takes place over four semesters: fall, spring, summer, and fall. The DNP program allows nurses with an MSN degree to specialize in an area of evidence-based practice. The DNP program requires 1000 hours of clinical experience and completion of a practice inquiry project (thesis).

Doctor of Nursing Practice – BSN to DNP

An RN who holds a BSN degree is welcome to complete the DNP program, but instead of the thirty-four credit hours that an MSN-trained nurse must complete, he must complete seventy-two credit hours. This BSN to DNP bridge program takes eight semesters: three full years plus two additional summer semesters. As with the MSN-entry students, BSN-entry students must complete 1000 hours of clinical practice, and cap the program with a thesis.

Contact:
University of Hawaiʻi at Hilo
200 West Kawili Street
Hilo, HI 96720

 
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