Is an Accelerated Nursing Program Worth It?

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Our ABSN Program = A Worthwhile Investment - ABSN students in skills lab

An accelerated nursing school is a great educational option if you want to transition into the nursing profession sooner rather than later.

But we’ll be among the first to admit that enrolling in an Accelerated Bachelor of Science in Nursing (ABSN) program does require a major investment in dedication and money. However, we’re also here to tell you that an accelerated nursing program is worth it, especially if you decide to pursue it through Averett University’s 16-month ABSN program.

A BSN Can Open Doors

Earning your Bachelor of Science in Nursing sets you up to take advantage of lucrative nursing opportunities and high-quality nursing jobs.

Hospitals and health care providers value a BSN when considering a nurse for employment. In fact, many hospitals are moving to hire only registered nurses who hold a BSN degree — as Magnet® hospitals require nurse managers and leaders to hold a bachelor’s in nursing.

Did you know? A BSN may even be the key to finding a great position post-graduation. The American Association of Colleges of Nurses infers that BSN-educated nurse graduates are far more likely to find a job shortly after graduation than are new nurse graduates overall.

Compared with Associate Degree of Nursing (ADN) programs, BSN programs like the ABSN program at Averett University feature more rigorous and immersive nursing curricula. As such, Averett students graduate with exceptional confidence in everything from basic nursing skills to everyday issues that lead to significant disparities in health and treatment.

In addition, it’s becoming clear that nurses equipped with a BSN end up providing lifesaving care to patients who need it. In fact, there’s a growing wealth of research that indicates that hospitals and other health care settings that employer higher percentages of BSN-educated nurses yield better outcomes for patients.

That’s exactly why in 2010 the Institute of Medicine (IOM) set an aggressive goal for 80% of the U.S. nursing workforce to hold a BSN degree by 2020. While this goal was not met due to factors such as the unexpected COVID pandemic as well as the nursing shortage — it’s clear that a BSN degree is the future of nursing and can make a big difference for patients.

A BSN Affords You Career Options

Another reason earning your BSN is worthwhile is that it provides you options. Not only can a BSN give you a competitive edge when applying for jobs at respected hospitals, it can also set you up for success in jobs outside the hospital.

If you’re not interested in working in hospitals, physicians’ offices or outpatient facilities, or if you just want to shake things up and branch out, these alternative nursing careers may be a good fit.

A BSN can also offer you varied career options in the form of a diverse array of specializations, including:

  • Intensive care
  • Emergency room
  • Labor and delivery
  • Pediatrics
  • Geriatrics
  • Medical-surgical nursing

As an Averett ABSN student, you can expect to “try on” some of these specializations during clinical rotations, which we’ll discuss later.

Why Choose Averett University’s Accelerated Nursing Program?

Averett University’s ABSN program comprises online coursework, hands-on labs and clinical placements at respected healthcare organizations to prepare you to become a confident, capable nurse. Here’s a few more reasons you should consider earning your BSN in Norfolk.

Great Location

As you can tell, earning your accelerated nursing degree is worth it for many reasons, but a big one is that if you choose to enroll in the Averett ABSN program, it can bring you to beautiful Norfolk, Virginia.

Surrounded by beautiful aquatic views, Norfolk is a naval port town that offers a look at history as far back as pre-Revolutionary War times.

Because Norfolk is on the waterfront, it serves as a point of contact for the U.S. Navy, and is home to the Naval Station Norfolk, which is the world’s largest naval installation.

Norfolk, Virginia skyline

Thinking about relocating to Norfolk to pursue a career as a nurse? Find out why it's a smart move.

Opportunity Abounds

Good news for would-be nurses: the city also has a diverse health care sector. Whether you’re a student leveraging your education to become a nurse or perhaps a veteran considering a second career as a nurse in Norfolk, it is a great place to sharpen your skills.

Norfolk also plays a significant role in medicine in the region, with approximately 65,000 people employed in the medical and life sciences fields, according to the Hampton Roads Economic Development Alliance. Some of the area’s most respected health care organizations include:

  • Sentara Healthcare, which comprises seven hospitals and offers 64,400 jobs locally.
  • Operation Smile, an organization that employs about 100 people who work to give free medical procedures to children with facial deformities.
  • Naval Medical Center Portsmouth, which employs 4,300 military medical personnel in the area and is also one of oldest working hospitals in the Navy Medical System.
  • Bon Secours employs 3,082 nurses and is respected locally and nationwide.

Norfolk is a wonderful place to learn to become a nurse, and your clinical placements will give you lots of opportunities for networking and learning more about these esteemed health care facilities.

Enrolling in the ABSN program at Averett University is the first step in achieving your dream of becoming a nurse. It will be hard work and a big commitment, but if you want a rewarding career as a nurse, all that effort is well worth it.

While we can’t speak for all accelerated nursing programs, the Averett ABSN program is worth it because it gives you greater access to:

An Earlier Start Date

You worked hard to earn your existing non-nursing bachelor’s degree or college credits. So even if you decide nursing school is the path for you instead, it makes sense you’d want all that hard work to count for something. On the other hand, you also don’t want to spend any more time pursuing a new degree than necessary.

At the Averett University ABSN program, we get that. That’s why we designed our 16-month hybrid curriculum to build upon your previous learning experiences.

Unlike other ABSN programs, we require:

  • at least 60 non-nursing college credits
  • OR a bachelor’s degree in a non-nursing field
Averett nursing student listening to another nursing student's breathing

Plus, by focusing solely on nursing coursework, we’re able to accommodate more career-ready nurses sooner than traditional four-year BSN programs that offer only one start date per year. Our ABSN program offers three start dates per year — in January, May and August.

Admissions Support for Prospective Students

Transitioning into a new nursing career can seem intimidating, especially if you have no prior health care experience. Having someone by your side throughout the entire process of getting into nursing school can go a long way toward boosting your confidence and making you feel like accelerated nursing school — and a rewarding nursing career — is possible for you.

How do you prepare for nursing school? We've got all the tips you'll need.

woman sitting at desk writing on paper

At Averett ABSN, we aim to help you access a bright nursing future, starting from your initial inquiry into our program, when you'll be paired with a dedicated admissions counselor. From your first call with them to your first day as an Averett ABSN student, our admissions team is here to guide you on your path to becoming a resilient, responsive nurse leader. It's their job to:

  • Determine whether you're a good fit for our program.
  • Assess your academic and professional goals.
  • Create an academic plan that aligns with your target start date.
  • Help you stay on track to complete your accelerated nursing school application.

More Flexibility with Online Learning

As an Averett ABSN student, you'll complete your nursing coursework online through our intuitive e-Learning platform. This component of our program adds another level of accessibility to our ABSN program, as it provides the option of completing your nursing assignments when and where it's best for you.

Online learning allows you to absorb key nursing theory coursework — provided you meet deadlines set forth by your instructors, of course.

However, even though you’ll have some autonomy over your study schedule and location, you’ll still have deadlines and in-person proctored exams. You’ll be responsible for taking these at the Averett University Norfolk ABSN Site.

Hands-on Experience in Skills and Simulation Labs

While you’ll complete your ABSN coursework 100-percent online, you still must learn the hands-on aspects of the profession in an in-person setting.

Two nursing students checking the blood pressure of another averett nursing student

As an Averett ABSN student, you’ll have access to a realistic and safe mock clinical environment at our program site in Norfolk to practice fundamental nursing skills such as:

  • Head-to-toe assessments
  • Wound care
  • Catheter and IV insertion
  • Nasogastric tube insertion

Once you master key nursing skills, you’ll participate in simulation labs. During these labs, you’ll have the chance to refine problem solving, collaboration and critical-thinking skills in context without the fear of harming a real patient. Working with a group of your peers, you’ll apply learned skills on high-tech medical manikins to simulate real-life situations, then debrief with instructors to learn ways you can improve.

Real-World Clinical Rotations

While nursing coursework and labs are important parts of your accelerated nursing education, nothing prepares you more for what to expect as a registered nurse than clinical rotations. Starting your first semester in the Averett ABSN program, you can expect to work alongside an experienced nurse in a real-world health care setting.

Here, you’ll learn the ins and outs of caring for patients in diverse practice areas ranging from adult to mental health and maternal- and child-focused care. Under this setup, you’ll have the opportunity to “find your fit” in the nursing world and network with health care professionals across a wide variety of disciplines.

In all, you’ll complete 488 clinical hours at top health care facilities around Hampton Roads as well as 97 clinical hours via simulation at the Norfolk ABSN Learning Site. That adds up to 585 clinical hours, during which you’ll have access to some of the area’s top health care professionals. You may even have a chance to connect with hospital leadership during the Transition to Practice I course during semester 4.

Supportive Faculty and Staff

As an Averett ABSN student, you’ll have access to the expertise and guidance of our highly experienced nursing instructors. Not only will they teach you key nursing skills and concepts, but they’ll also offer a helping hand with mentoring, advice and moral support as you embark on your nursing career.

Averett nursing instructor with students in a skills lab

We should also point out that just because you won’t necessarily see them face-to-face every day, you can still expect to stay in close communication and have access to support resources whenever you need them. You can always contact your nursing instructors by phone, email, text or through in-person or virtual office hours. You’ll also interact with them in-person during your skills and simulation labs as well as clinical rotations beginning first semester.

Averett’s Accelerated Nursing Program Is Worth It

If you can’t wait to become a nurse, an accelerated nursing program is worth it. The 16-month Averett ABSN program aims to equip you with the nursing skills and knowledge needed to pass the NCLEX-RN and enter the nursing field with confidence. Your new career as a registered nurse becomes accessible when you reach out to our admissions team.

Complete the form to have an admissions counselor tell you more about why enrolling in the Averett ABSN program is worth it for your future nursing career.