Heritage Valley Sewickley School of Nursing Program Review

Heritage Valley Sewickley School of Nursing (HVSSN), located just outside Pittsburgh, is part of Heritage Valley Health Systems, a healthcare foundation that includes Heritage Valley Sewickley Hospital, Heritage Valley Beaver Hospital, four affiliated physician groups, and healthcare centers in western Pennsylvania, eastern Ohio, and northern West Virginia. The School of Nursing has been in existence since 1916. Its nursing program prepares students for Registered Nurse (RN) positions and for further nursing education.

Diploma in Nursing Program Overview

Heritage Valley Sewickley School of Nursing begins its nursing program each fall. The entire program takes two full years to complete. It is broken into four terms. In the first two terms (October through the following September), students take lower-level nursing courses and twelve credits of college courses in writing, sociology, and psychology. The college courses are completed through La Roche College in McCandless. In the second two terms (October through the following September), students take upper-level nursing courses in maternal nursing, pediatric nursing, psychiatric nursing, and critical care nursing. They wrap up the program by preparing for the National Council Licensing Exam for Registered Nurses (NCLEX_RN). If successful with the exam, they may continue on to positions as RNs. Alternatively, graduates of the diploma program have the option of transferring their twelve credits of college courses and their nursing courses into an RN to Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) program at a four-year college.

Additional Program Facts

The diploma in nursing program at Heritage Valley Sewickley School of Nursing is accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission and approved by the Pennsylvania State Board of Nursing. Its graduates have a NCLEX_RN first-time pass rate of 85.2 percent.

Student Services

Heritage Valley Sewickley School of Nursing does not offer housing to students; it is a commuter school, easily accessible from Pittsburg and the surrounding area. Health services and counseling are available to students as necessary. Students can take advantage of the library at the school, as well as the medical libraries at the affiliated hospitals, and the library at La Roche College. Students are invited to make their opinions known through The Student Leadership Council.

Diploma Programs – General Information

Diploma programs affiliated with nearby hospitals were, in the past, the most common way of training new nurses. While associate-degree and bachelor’s-degree programs are more common now, diploma programs are still worth considering. Typically, a diploma program is intensive. Heritage Valley Sewickley School of Nursing’s diploma program, for example, is two full years long, compared to a typical four-semester associate degree program. The clinical portion of a diploma program is typically more intense too. For example, the diploma program at Heritage Valley Sewickley School of Nursing incorporates hands-on, practical experience into the first class. Associate-degree programs often wait until the second semester to incorporate clinical rotations. Prospective RNs should not overlook diploma programs, which provide new nurses with the skills they need to succeed in the nursing profession, and provide a solid basis for further nursing education.

Heritage Valley Sewickley School of Nursing
420 Rouser Road, Suite 101,
Airport Office Park, Building 3
Moon Township, PA 15108


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