Hawaii Pacific University Nursing School Review

Serving students from all fifty states and over one hundred countries, Hawaii Pacific University (HPU) prides itself on its cultural diversity, as well as its academic excellence. Hawaii Pacific University offers over fifty undergraduate programs, as well as fourteen graduate programs.

The College of Business and the College of Humanities and Social Sciences are located in downtown Honolulu, while the College of Natural and Computational Sciences and the College of Nursing and Health Sciences are on Hawaii Pacific University’s residential campus in Kaneohe, eight miles outside Honolulu. Through the College of Nursing and Health Sciences, students can pursue both undergraduate and graduate nursing degrees. The programs are approved by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission and the Hawaii Board of Nursing. Here is a review of the available programs:

Bachelor of Science in Nursing

The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) program at Hawaii Pacific University consists of a minimum of 124 credit hours. These credit hours are broken down into several categories: general core education requirements (university requirements), nursing prerequisite requirements, transition to Level 1 nursing classes, and Levels 1 through 5 nursing. Students must fulfill all general education requirements, nursing prerequisites, and the one transition to nursing class with a minimum GPA of 2.75 in order to be eligible to begin the nursing classes. The program emphasizes clinical experience; the groups of students for clinicals range in size from six to ten. At the end of the program, students are eligible to take the National Council Licensing Exam for Registered Nurses (NCLEX_RN). If they are successful, they may seek work as Registered Nurses (RN).

Bachelor of Science in Nursing – RN-BSN

A student who already is licensed as an RN can earn his BSN much more quickly than a traditional nursing student. Hawaii Pacific University only requires the student to take two prerequisite classes (in writing) and eleven nursing classes. Depending on whether the student is full time or part time, this program could be completed in as little as three semesters.

Bachelor of Science in Nursing – LPN-BSN

A Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) with at least one year of experience can earn her BSN at Hawaii Pacific University, but it will take almost the same amount of time as the traditional BSN pathway. She must fulfill all general education requirements, all nursing prerequisite courses, and the transition to nursing class before applying to the BSN program. She must maintain a GPA of 2.75 throughout the prerequisite classes. If accepted to the program, her experience as an LPN will allow her to skip four nursing classes, for a total of ten credit hours. She must complete all the other nursing major courses in order to receive her BSN and be eligible to take the NCLEX_RN.

Bachelor of Science in Nursing – International Pathway

In keeping with its reputation as a culturally diverse university, Hawaii Pacific University offers a special pathway for nurses who are licensed in their own country, but not in the United States. Students must complete all general education classes and nursing prerequisites. After this, they are eligible to take the NLN Nursing Acceleration Challenge Examinations II and, if successful, to receive credit for fourteen nursing classes toward the BSN degree. Alternatively, students can take the NCLEX_RN. If successful with this exam, students transition into the RN-BSN pathway.

Transcultural Nursing Certificate

Also in keeping with its reputation as a university that appreciates cultural diversity, Hawaii Pacific University offers a unique program for any nursing student or current, practicing RN or LPN who wishes to better understand how to offer nursing care to people of different cultural backgrounds. The certificate program is thirteen credit hours, and includes courses in religion, psychology, anthropology, and communication, as well as nursing.

Master of Science in Nursing

Students who have already earned a BSN have the option of continuing their education through Hawaii Pacific University’s Master of Science (MSN) program. Within this program, they can choose between two tracks, leading to different certifications. Through the MSN program, they can either become Community Clinical Nurse Specialists (CNS) or Family Nurse Practitioners (FNP). Becoming an FNP requires forty-eight credit hours, and becoming a CNS requires forty-two credit hours. Students can pursue the MSN program on either a part-time or full-time basis.

Master of Science in Nursing – RN-MSN

An RN who wishes to earn both his BSN and MSN can enter the RN-MSN program, rather than completing the RN-BSN program and then completing a traditional MSN program. The RN-MSN pathway will take three and a half (for full-time enrollment) to four or more years (for part-time enrollment). The length of the program also depends on how many prerequisites are necessary. An advisor will evaluate the student’s transcript for previous academic work and clinical experience, and determine how many prerequisite classes are necessary. As with the traditional MSN program, a student in the RN-MSN program can choose to specialize as a CNS or a FNP.

Nurse Educator Certificate

An RN who wishes to train future nurses is eligible to complete a Nurse Educator Certificate. This program is open to MSN students, as well as to Registered Nurses who work in the community. This is a short program, consisting of only five classes. The classes cover teaching methods and theories, and a practical teaching experience is included.

Post-Master’s Certification – Family Nurse Practitioner

If a nurse already holds an MSN with a different specialization, she can become an FNP without going through the whole MSN program again. At Hawaii Pacific University, the Post-master’s certification process includes six classes, totaling twenty-seven credits. The classes cover children’s healthcare, adult healthcare, and women’s healthcare, and include clinical hours.

Master of Science in Nursing/Master in Business Administration

For nurses who wish to become business leaders in the healthcare field, Hawaii Pacific University offers a joint MSN/MBA program. This is an intense program, requiring at least sixty-six credit hours on top of any required prerequisites. Both the MBA program and the MSN program have prerequisites, so a student must meet all of these in order to be eligible to apply to the program.

Hawai’i Pacific University
1164 Bishop Street
Honolulu, Hawaii 96813

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