Our Lady of the Lake College Nursing Program Review

Our Lady of the Lake College (OLOL) is a private Catholic college located in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. The Franciscan Missionaries of Our Lady began the college in 1923 as Our Lady of the Lake School of Nursing to prepare nurses to work in hospitals in the area. Today, the college has over 1,800 students in associate’s, bachelor’s, and master’s degree programs in nursing, humanities, and other areas. There is also an associate degree program in New Orleans at the East Jefferson General Hospital in Metairie and at Tulane Medical Center in New Orleans.

Nursing Programs

Bachelor of Science

The School of Nursing at the college offers a Bachelor of Science that offers several options for those without any previous college, as well as for practicing Registered Nurses (RNs) and Licensed Practical Nurses (LPNs). Each of these is discussed below.

Nursing (Traditional BSN)

The traditional Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) program is for students without college experience, such as high school graduates. This four-year program requires 120 credits for completion and includes liberal arts and science courses, as well as nursing courses and clinical experience. Clinical experience takes place at hospitals, clinics, schools, and other sites so that the student has experience in working in many different healthcare environments with a wide range of patients. Graduates are able to take the national exam for licensure, the NCLEX-RN. They may then practice nursing at many different healthcare facilities. BSN trained nurses are in great demand in many different nursing areas.

The admission requirements include the completion of 31 to 32 pre-nursing courses. Sixteen to 17 of these credits must be completed before applying to the BSN program, and the student must earn at least a C in each course. Students must first apply for admission to OLOL College and complete at least nine credits before applying to the BSN program. They must have a grade point average of at least 2.75 in these courses. The Test of Essential Academic Skills (TEAS) test is required with a composite score of 58.7 percent or better.

RN to BSN to MSN

The Registered Nurse (RN) to Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) to Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) is designed for the nurse who is serious about continuing his or her education because it involves completing two different degrees. The benefit of completing the degrees this way is that students receive credits for their previously completed college work related to their RN degree. Full-time students can complete the required nursing course that lead to the BSN in two semesters. Then, only 30 credit hours beyond completion of the BSN degree are required. Full-time students are able to complete the MSN in only four semesters. Students may transfer up to 35 credits from their associate degree in arts and sciences and 38 credits of lower division nursing courses from this degree. A total of 120 credits are needed to complete the BSN.

Admission requirements include a diploma or associate degree from an accredited school of nursing and to be a licensed RN in Louisiana. RNs who have not yet obtained their license may be admitted on a provisional basis for one semester until they take and pass the NCLEX-RN. Official transcripts must be forwarded to the nursing department as well.


Licensed Practical Nurses (LPNs) who want to complete their Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) degree may apply for the LPN-BSN program. OLOL College offers a six credit Role Transition for the LPN, and after completing this and earning a grade of at least a C, the student may complete the final four semesters of the traditional BSN program. Forty credits of prerequisite arts and sciences courses must be completed before beginning the BSN nursing courses. Up to nine credits are awarded for the LPNs previous college work related to this nursing license. Students must apply to and be accepted by the college to begin the process. They must have current licensure as an LPN and complete at least nine credits at the college before applying.

A grade point average of 2.75 or better is necessary to earn in arts and sciences courses in the nursing curriculum. Applicants must also take the Test of Essential Academic Skills (TEAS) exam. Once the prerequisite courses have been completed, the student may begin taking the BSN courses and complete the curriculum. At the time of graduation, the student receives a BSN that will qualify him or her for many nursing positions. Successfully passing the NCLEX-RN, the national exam for licensure as a Registered Nurse is required to begin practice.

Accelerated BSN

An Accelerated Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) option is available to students at the Baton Rouge campus of OLOL College. The program is designed for those who have a bachelor’s degree in a non-nursing field. The intense 18 month program requires full-time attendance. Students must meet all of the prerequisites before beginning the 60 credit hours in nursing that they will complete in that year and one-half. The program consists of 60 credits of general education requirements and 60 credits of nursing courses, including clinical experience at local healthcare facilities. At the completion of the program, graduates take the NCLEX-RN for licensure as a Registered Nurse.

To be admitted to the program, candidates must have a bachelor’s degree from an accredited college or university. They must apply for full admission to the college and complete the prerequisite courses and maintain a grade point average of 3.0 or better in these.

Master of Science in Nursing

OLOL College offers a Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) program for RNs with a BSN. Students may choose the specialty advanced nursing track that they want to concentrate on in this program. All MSN students must complete the MSN core courses before moving on to complete the specialty courses related to their track. After graduation, students may either continue their studies by completing a doctoral degree or by working in their chosen area. Thirty credits are needed to complete the program, and a full-time student may do this in four semesters. Admission requirements for the MSN program include a BSN from an accredited nursing program and licensure as a RN in Louisiana, or the eligibility to apply for this license. Applicants must complete a three hour undergraduate statistics course and an undergraduate research course and earn grades of at least C in each. The two options in the MSN program are explained below.

Administrator Track

This MSN specialty track prepares RNs for leadership positions in various healthcare organizations. Students learn quality improvement and cost containment as well as free market competition, managed care, technology, and diversity. They focus on ethical issues and learn to assess and analyze healthcare needs. A capstone project is required at the end of this program.

Educator Track

This MSN track prepares students for a career as a nurse educator that is qualified to teach nursing students at the undergraduate level. Students learn curriculum development and evaluation methods, as well as educating patients about diseases, illnesses, and wellness. They also learn to facilitate healthcare programs in a variety of institutions besides hospitals. At the end of the program, students complete a capstone project.

MS Nurse Anesthesia

A Master of Science (MS) degree in Nurse Anesthesia is offered at the college that prepares RNs for advanced clinical practice in anesthesia. Graduates receive a Master of Science Degree in Nurse Anesthesia. At the completion of the program, graduates sit for the National Board on Certification and Recertification of Nurse Anesthetists. A selective process is used to admit students to this program that takes 28 months of continuous study. There is no part-time option offered for this program. Application requirements are that an applicant must have a current, unrestricted RN license and must be a graduate of an accredited school of nursing at the RN level with a BSN. Two years of acute care experience are preferred, but applicants with one year’s experience are considered for the program. It is preferred that this experience is in an adult intensive care unit.

Applicants must have a grade point average of at least 3.0 on their undergraduate coursework, and they need to have taken the Graduate Record Examination (GRE) within the last five years. A course in chemistry must have been taken on either the undergraduate level before being admitted to the program.

Our Lady of the Lake College
7434 Perkins Road,
Baton Rouge, LA 70808
(225) 768-1700

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