FVCC Nursing Programs Receive Approval from State Board

By Beacon Staff

Flathead Valley Community College has received a five-year approval from the Montana Board of Nursing for the college’s two-year practical nursing and registered nursing associate degree programs, the school announced Thursday.

The approval was decided at the Oct. 24 Montana Board of Nursing meeting in Helena.

Nursing programs are reviewed by the MBON at least every five years to confirm standards for approval are being met. The process includes a rigorous self-study that is reviewed by the MBON in addition to an onsite survey of the programs being reviewed. During this process, the reviewers determine whether or not the programs are in substantial compliance with the Montana Board of Nursing administrative rules.

All nursing programs in Montana are required to have MBON approval for graduates of the programs to be eligible for their respective licensing exams.

FVCC’s PN program received initial five-year approval from the MBON in 2008. The current review was a re-approval of the PN program for an additional five years.

The approval of FVCC’s RN program was the final phase of a three-part process required for new nursing education programs adopted by MBON in 2010. FVCC began the process in 2011. During the second phase, MBON approved FVCC’s proposed RN curriculum which allowed FVCC to accept its first 10 RN students in January 2012. Phase III of the process was completed in July with the onsite review.

Currently, there are 20 students enrolled in the college’s PN program, and a new class of 12 RN students will start in January 2014, according to the school.

School officials said FVCC has a 95 percent average pass rate among first-time license exam takers in both the PN and RN programs, with the most recent program graduates achieving a 100 percent pass rate.

Nursing Program Director Myrna Ridenour, MSN RN, credits the success of both programs to the caliber of dedicated students in conjunction with the supportive community, a dedicated and dynamic nursing faculty and staff and the deep commitment and knowledge of general faculty at FVCC. She also applauds FVCC for providing the students a solid foundation necessary for success in the rigorous nursing curriculum.

Applications for the Fall 2014 PN program will be available at the beginning of March 2014 and will be due at the end of the following month.

Application information and packets will be available on the FVCC website. For more information regarding FVCC Nursing programs, visit the program’s website or contact Nursing Program Assistant Cathy Fabel at cfabel@fvcc.edu or 756-3385.

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