Dordt College Nursing Program Review

Dordt College (DC), in Sioux Center, Iowa, approaches education from the Christian perspective. The school, which is associated with the Christian Reformed Church, focuses on giving its students a biblical foundation, no matter what course of studies the students pursue. When the college was founded in 1955, the school only offered liberal arts degrees. Now, although most of the school’s 1300 students are enrolled in liberal arts programs, the college also offers programs in nursing, social work, business, agriculture, and engineering. Graduate students can also pursue a master’s in education.

The college is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association of Colleges and Secondary Schools; the nursing program at Dordt College is accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) and approved by the Iowa State Board of Nursing.

Bachelor of Science in Nursing

Dordt College cooperates with St. Luke’s College in Sioux City to offer a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) program. Students simultaneously enroll in both colleges, although they live in the housing provided by Dordt College. The first year of the four-year program is devoted to Dordt College’s general education/liberal arts requirements. Beginning in the first semester of her second year, a student in the BSN program begins nursing classes and clinical rotations. St. Luke’s College offers the nursing classes; the student may need to travel to St. Luke College’s campus in Sioux City to take some nursing classes, although most are available on Dordt College’s campus. The student has to travel to Sioux City to complete clinical rotations, most of which take place at St. Luke’s Regional Medical Center.

After completing two years of nursing coursework through St. Luke’s College, the student receives an Associate of Science in Nursing (ASN) degree from St. Luke’s and can take the National Council Licensing Exam for Registered Nurses (NCLEX-RN). If she passes this test, she is eligible to begin her nursing career as a Registered Nurse (RN). However, if she completes one more year of coursework, through Dordt College, she can earn her BSN degree as well.

Dordt College’s fourth-year nursing courses focus on community health, family nursing, nursing care across cultures, and nursing research (as a preparation for graduate nursing education, should the student wish to pursue advanced certification at a later date). The fourth year of the program includes a clinical component. Students do not need to travel to Sioux City to complete these rotations; local community health organizations in Sioux Center and the surrounding area host the fourth-year nursing students.

At the conclusion of her fourth year, she receives her BSN degree. Although the fourth year of the program are not necessary in order for her to find work as an RN, since she takes the NCLEX-RN at the conclusion of her third year, a BSN degree is the necessary first step toward graduate nursing education. If a student thinks that she may want to pursue advanced certification, completing the full BSN degree is a wise investment of her time.

Dordt College
498 4th Ave. NE
Sioux Center, IA 51250

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