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VBSN: Supporting Veterans Pursuing an RN to BS in Nursing

VBSN: Supporting Veterans Pursuing an RN to BS in Nursing

In 2014, Excelsior College was awarded a three-year grant from the Health Resources and Services Administration to assist qualified veterans in earning a bachelor’s degree in nursing. In July 2017, Excelsior was offered a 1-year extension to complete all grant projects and evaluation efforts.

The overall Veteran’s Bachelor’s Degree in Nursing (VBSN) project goal was to support veterans in achieving their Bachelor of Science in Nursing. A bachelor’s degree will broaden employment opportunities and increase earning potential.

Excelsior College's biggest VBSN project accomplishments included:

  • DAACS (Diagnostic Assessment and Achievement of College Skills) pilot survey was conducted specifically with VBSN students. This pilot focused on self-regulation and grit. The VBSN grant funded the creation of the video clips used throughout the assessment and feedback.
  • Inter-Professional Education Case Conference experience in the bachelor's in nursing curriculum. This collaboration included Excelsior's School of Health Sciences, The Sage College's Nutrition Program, and Albany School of Pharmacy. Incorporating an integrated case conference in an online course offered an opportunity for students to self-reflect on their understanding and self-efficacy around their roles and responsibilities, values and ethics, communication, and teamwork — all core competencies for interprofessional collaborative practice in today's working environment.
  • The Three-Part Series Careers in Nursing Videos:
    • The videos include topics such as: The many nursing career paths available including clinical practice, education, administration, and other unique specialties such as informatics.
    • Advanced degree options - master's, doctorate (ex. midwife, nurse practitioner, nurse anesthetist, clinical nurse specialist, educator, leadership).
    • Professional growth (professional certifications, association affiliations).
  • Course revisions were made across a range of courses in the Bachelor of Science in Nursing Program.
  • Dedicated academic advisors, a mentor, and student success coaches were assigned to VBSN students. Students had a direct line of contact with any of these individuals to help guide their educational path.
  • In June 2017, Excelsior College collaborated with Albany Medical Center to host its Annual Educational Institute titled “Lessons from the Field: Innovations in Veteran Education, Transitions, and Care.” The conference gathered more than 80 nursing education professionals nationwide.

Excelsior College continues to offer dedicated veterans support services including;

  • One-on-one support from an academic advisor specializing in veteran services.
  • Career counseling and resources to assist with your job search and career development.
  • Counsel from our Center for Military and Veteran Education to help you maximize your military and VA tuition assistance benefits.
  • Other resources offered through the Lt Col Bryant A. Murray Veterans Center.

Careers in Nursing Videos

Voice of Experience—practical insights about nursing careers and education from Excelsior nursing graduate Jonathan Green, DNP, Director of Critical Care at Bon Secours Charity Health System, Inc.