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  Sep 23, 2020
UNDERGRADUATE CATALOG 2018-2019 [Archived Catalog]

School of Nursing


Kimberly Sharp, Dean
Professor (2015)

Rick Lewis
Chair - Undergraduate Programs
Assistant Professor (2016)

Jeanne Bernier
CNL Program Director
Instructor (2014)
Cell #251-609-7988

Deborah Bolian
Assistant Professor (1985)

Dina Dent
Instructor (2017)

Tamara Ford
Instructor (1994)

Cecelia Hall
Visiting Assistant Professor

Lydia Hall
Instructor (2017)

Allison Hayes
Instructor (2010)

Mary Ann Henriques
Professor (1990)

Karen Ivie
RN-BSN Program Director
Assistant Professor (2016)

Nicole Jager
Assistant Professor (2016)

Lisa Lycette
Instructor (2012)

Taylor Martin
Instructor (2017)

Jill Mayo
Assistant Professor (1993)

Amber Nesenson
Instructor (2017)

Susan McCaskill Richardson
Assistant Professor (1985)

David Sharp
Professor (2017)

Mary Ellen Stewart
Instructor (2013)

Deborah Welch
Assistant Professor (2005)


Support Staff

Jo Sistrunk
Administrative Assistant to the Dean (2004)

Owen Boutwell
Nursing Admission Program Specialist (2017)

Carol Clendenon
Nursing Admission Consultant (2008)

Joanna Wimberley
Records Coordinator (2017)

Owen Boutwell
Nursing Admission Program Specialist (2017)



The establishment of the Mississippi College School of Nursing was the realization of a dream of a former president of the University, Dr. Richard A. McLemore. In 1966, the Gilfoy School of Nursing, Baptist Hospital, Jackson, Mississippi, the only Baptist school of nursing in the state, decided to phase out its diploma program in nursing. The program graduated its last class of nursing students in June, 1971. Dr. McLemore believed that Mississippi College had the academic competence and Christian environment in which to educate nurses with excellent professional and Christian qualities. Additional impetus for the establishment of the School came when the Foreign Mission Board of the Southern Baptist Convention raised its minimum requirement for becoming a missionary nurse to a bachelor of science in nursing degree. In 1968, the Board of Trustees of the University approved the establishment of the Mississippi College School of Nursing, and in 1969, the first class of nursing students was accepted by the University.


The Mississippi College School of Nursing (MCSON) mission is to provide excellence in nursing education within a Christian institution. Graduates are prepared to engage in professional nursing practice as generalists, and to become positive contributors to the profession, to the community, and to society.

Nursing Program Outcomes

The program outcomes of the MCSON are designed to prepare a nurse generalist who will:

  1. Integrate clinical reasoning and Christian Caring in the delivery of safe, holistic, patient-centered care to diverse populations across the lifespan in a variety of settings.
  2. Incorporate personal and professional development, with relevant evidence-based practice, as the critical thinking premise for all health care delivery.
  3. Demonstrate effective use of technology and informatics for the provision of safe, ethical, and quality care to diverse populations.
  4. Apply management and leadership concepts in the delivery of quality patient centered care.
  5. Utilize communication techniques and collaborative skills to facilitate safe, quality outcomes with patients, families and populations.


The School of Nursing is accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education and the Mississippi Institutions of Higher Learning. 


The School of Nursing is located in Cockroft Hall which provides a central location for nursing faculty offices and classrooms. The Harvey Garrison Jr. Learning Center houses some of the SON teaching and clinical supplies. Simulated patient care stations are part of all Cockroft Hall nursing classrooms and in the larger Nursing Skills Center. The audio-visual capacity is augmented by the University’s Learning Resources Center located in the Leland Speed Library, and many networked resources can be accessed and streamed online.

Nursing classes are conducted on the Mississippi College campus in Cockroft Hall, the Nursing Skills Center, and at Camp Garaway. The clinical portions of the nursing courses utilize a variety of hospitals and agencies in the Jackson area. Students may also elect learning experiences in other localities within the United States or abroad.


The school of nursing has policies that are specific to the School of Nursing. Nursing students should review these policies, which involve both academic and non-academic matters. The policies are included in the Student Handbook that is provided to all students meeting criteria to continue into upper division clinical level course work in the School of Nursing. Students are expected to abide by School of Nursing policies, and failure to do so may result in dismissal from the program.

Criminal Background Checks

In accordance with Mississippi legislative statues and regulations for health care institutions regarding criminal background checks. Every student must have fingerprints taken, a criminal background check completed, and must affirm annually that there has been no change in their criminal background clearance. Cost of these requirements will be the student’s responsibility. The student must be in compliance with the legislative statues and hospital policies to participate in clinical experiences.

Substance Abuse and Screenings

Mississippi College School of Nursing is committed to protecting the safety, health, and welfare of its faculty, staff, students and the community of interest including patients and staff in clinical agencies. To this end, the School of Nursing prohibits the illicit use, possession, sale, conveyance, distribution and manufacture of illegal drugs, intoxicants, and/or controlled substances in all instances.  The School of Nursing requires all students to submit to drug testing under any or all of the following circumstances: upon confirmation of successful completion of criteria for continuation into clinical level course work in the School of Nursing; random testing; as required by clinical agencies; and for cause.  Failure of a drug screen will be dealt with consistent with the policy of the School of Nursing, and may include failure and/or dismissal from the program.


Successful completion of all required elements for the Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree permits the student to make application to take the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX) for RN licensure examination. However, any disciplinary action, arrest, charge, addiction, or impairment may result in denial of licensure as a registered nurse. A criminal background check may be required by state licensure authorities.

Degree Programs

The School of Nursing offers a program of study leading to a Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree. The BSN is the basic professional degree for nurses and the foundation for graduate nursing education. The nursing curriculum provides general knowledge in the arts and sciences with specialized content in professional nursing


The nursing curriculum is designed to enable the student to secure a broad foundation in general education with content in professional nursing education. The general education courses aid in broadening understanding of self and others, in enhancing the ability to communicate effectively, and in providing a perspective of the society within which one lives and practices the profession.

Curricula are innovative with its integration of faith, simulation, and caring. Content themes reflect current trends in health care and nursing, and standardized testing benchmarks at each level ensure that students meet national benchmarks in preparation for immediate graduate professional nursing practice and for the future of health care. For further information regarding this curriculum revision, please contact the School of Nursing.

High School Preparation

The recommended high school preparation for a major in Nursing should include 3 units of science, one of which should be chemistry, and 2 units of math, including algebra.


BSN Students

To enter the School of Nursing, one must first be admitted to Mississippi College and declare a nursing major. Students who complete all the academic and professional requirements are reviewed for continuation in the clinical level of the nursing major. Admission to the University does not guarantee graduation as a nursing major.

The School of Nursing reviews students for academic progression into clinical level courses twice each year; at the beginning of the fall and spring semesters. Nursing students seeking entry into the clinical nursing level of the program need to submit their completed academic and professional documentation to the School of Nursing office by February 1st preceding the fall semester or September 1st preceding the spring semester they wish to enter. Students seeking to move ahead after these dates will be considered on a “space available basis.” Students should have completed most core courses prior to seeking permission to move into the clinical level of the nursing major.

Students who have taken all their work at Mississippi College have priority for clinical level places in the nursing program if they meet the minimum academic and professional requirements. Transfer students are admitted whenever there is space available in the class. The total number of hours taken at MC and the grade point average are considered along with the minimum academic and professional requirements in the admission of students.

Candidates with repeats in more than two pre-requisite courses will not be considered for continuation into upper division clinical level nursing. Applicants with no repeats of lower level courses will be given preference over students who have repeated courses. Any social and natural science courses must have been completed within five (5) years of the date of application.

Students preparing for entry into the clinical nursing program are enrolled into the “Interdisciplinary Studies  - Pre-Nursing” program. Students who successfully meet academic and professional requirements for clinical nursing are moved into the nursing major route

Minimum requirements for continuation in the nursing major include:*

  1. Completion of all prerequisite courses with a grade of C or higher.
  2. Successful completion of university core courses or a faculty-approved plan for completing these in a timely fashion.
  3. A cumulative grade point average (GPA) of 2.50 or higher based on work completed at Mississippi College.**
  4. Acceptable scores on pre-admissions examinations. (Contact the School of Nursing for specific requirements.) ABSN applicants complete an HESI critical thinking test as part of their application process.
  5. The Evolve nursing HESI (A2) assessment examination benchmark is set at 80, with three attempts permitted.  Transfer students may submit electronic results for a TEAS result that is at or above the national program mean for BSN students, with three attempts permitted. Please use review materials to prepare for entry assessments.

Consistent with State law for health care providers, and for compliance with clinical agency requirements, criminal background checks and/or drug screenings may be required. Failure to successfully meet requirements for the background check or drug screening may result in denial of admission to or progression within the School of Nursing.

*Note: Admission into clinical level courses in the nursing major for transfer students is competitively based. The requirements listed above are the minimum for admission to the program. Prospective nursing students are strongly encouraged to exceed minimum levels of work, especially in relation to grade point average, grades in the nursing prerequisite courses, and scores on the pre-admissions examination. When there are more qualified applicants than can be accommodated by the faculty and available clinical facilities, the Admissions and Progression Committee will select those most qualified for the positions available. The Committee may take into account any and all aspects of the student’s prior educational record in assessing preparation for success in upper division clinical level courses in the nursing program. Careful consideration is given to achievement in prerequisite courses.
**Students should make every effort to complete writing proficiency requirements prior to admission to the School of Nursing.


RN-BSN Completion Students

Advanced placement in the nursing major is available to the registered nurse who is a graduate of a state-approved diploma or associate degree program. Mississippi College School of Nursing is committed to providing opportunities for educational advancement for working registered nurses through online delivery of courses and flexible clinical experiences that allow nurses to complete their BSN in as little as 12 months.

Mississippi College’s 100% online RN to BSN program is designed to develop compassionate and knowledgeable nurse leaders who will help transform health care. Designed specifically for working RNs, our CCNE-accredited program is flexible, affordable and convenient.

The registered nurse student must meet the minimum admission requirements for Mississippi College, and must have access to a personal computer and internet services.

MC RN to BSN online Requirements (See SON website for a complete list of requirements and helpful links to application resources):

  • Complete application and pay $25 application fee
  • Have a 2.0 GPA
  • Submit official transcripts from all previous institutions attended
  • Possess a current unrestricted registered nurse license in state of residence
  • Have criminal background clearance for clinical practice in state of residence

TOEFL Admission Criteria Specifications for the School of Nursing

A certain level of English proficiency is necessary for academic success in nursing as well as for patient safety. In addition to Mississippi College’s English proficiency requirements, all applicants to the School of Nursing whose first language is not English (including international and/or U.S. residents) must meet additional requirements. Students who have a first degree from a program with English as the primary language may provide documentation to request exemption from the TOEFL requirement.

The Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) or International English Language Testing System (IELTS) is required of all applicants to clinical level courses in the School of Nursing whose first language is not English, with the exception of licensed practical nurses and registered nurses who hold current United States LPN or RN licensure. (LPN and RN students may be required to take the TOEFL / IELTS or other testing before or during the course of the program, if so recommended by the Dean and/or School of Nursing faculty instructors).

Minimum TOEFL Scores for Consideration of Admission:

To be considered for continuation into clinical level courses in the School of Nursing, applicants must achieve minimum scores on the TOEFL Internet-based test (TOEFL iBT) of:

Minimum Cumulative Score of:
    83 combined (6.5 IELTS banding)

AND Minimum Individual Scores of 18, with target scores of:
    26 in Speaking
    20 in Writing
    20 in Reading
    20 in Listening
In comparison, the paper-based TOEFL of 550 is required, 213 or better on the computer-based TOEFL, or 83 overall.

Test Preparation and Registration

TOEFL iBT Registration:

Complete information on the TOEFL iBT, including free test preparation materials, testing sites, and registration, is available online at Applicants may register for the TOEFL iBT by Internet, telephone (1-800-468-6335) or mail.

To request official TOEFL iBT scores to be sent to Mississippi College, School of Nursing, enter Institution Code 79577. 

Students who have taken previous versions of the TOEFL (computer-based or paper-based tests) should contact the School of Nursing at 601-925-3380.

Only official score reports will be accepted. TOEFL scores are valid for two years from the test date (see score information online).

Policy for Continuing Nursing Students

Nursing students in the clinical portion of the nursing program whose first language is not English should be aware that they may not be able to complete the program of study within the described time frame. Individual advising is available and is directed toward student success.

Current students who have difficulty in the program may be encouraged to take extra steps (e.g., enroll half-time in nursing courses, participate in ESL courses or activities) in an effort to increase the probability of their success in the program and on the certifying examinations.

Financial Information

Detailed financial information is located in the Financial Information  section of the Undergraduate Catalog. Further information regarding Nursing Scholarships may be obtained from the Office of Financial Aid. 

For nursing majors taking clinical courses, the costs of uniforms, annual physical examinations, assessment supplies, malpractice insurance, standardized tests, NCLEX Review, professional association fees and a $70.00 charge per semester hour of clinical work are in addition to the standard university tuition, fees, lab/simulation fees, and books. Some courses may require that students use their personal cars or share rides with fellow students. A personal laptop computer is strongly recommended as electronic resources are integrated in classroom, personal study assignments and testing

Academic Information


The Dean of the School of Nursing or a designated faculty member acts as general advisor to all nursing majors and to students who have not yet been formally admitted to the nursing program. Faculty advisors counsel students regarding academic concerns, adjustment to university life, and professional goals.

Class Attendance

Students in the nursing major are subject to Mississippi College and the School of Nursing rules regulating class attendance and absences as outlined in the Undergraduate Catalog under Attendance Regulations and the School of Nursing Handbook. Attendance in class and clinical laboratory is required and students are expected to attend regularly and to be on time to all learning experiences.

Off-Campus Credit

The Dean of the School of Nursing reserves the right to determine whether any course from another institution will be accepted toward a degree in nursing at Mississippi College.

Academic Standards Specific to the Nursing Major

Clinical level upper division students must maintain at least a 2.00 cumulative grade point average for progression. A grade of C or better is required in all nursing courses and nursing courses may be repeated only one time. The failure of any two theory or clinical courses will result in dismissal from the nursing program. Specific progression policies may be found in the School of Nursing student handbook. There is a five-year time limit that applies to all courses in the nursing major. Any student, for whatever reason, who does not graduate within a five-year time period may be required to repeat any nursing course taken more than five years previously. Students are required to complete all nursing courses within their course sequence and must repeat any clinical course when the HESI benchmark is not met. The HESI benchmark levels are 800 for NUR 386 , and 850 for NUR 390 , NUR 406  and NUR 433 .

Since minimum standards for progression in the nursing major are different from the minimum to avoid suspension from Mississippi College, a student who becomes ineligible to enter or remain in the nursing major may still be eligible to remain a student at Mississippi College in another major. 

Graduation Requirements for Bachelor of Science in Nursing (B.S.N.)

The general requirements for the bachelor’s degree in Nursing are:

  1. An 850 score on the HESI comprehensive RN Exit Exam® is required to fulfill the course requirements for NUR 433 . Students receiving an incomplete in the course will be permitted to retake the HESI comprehensive RN Exit Exam® at their expense until they have achieved the 850 benchmark. Students may participate in pinning and graduation with this course incomplete but will not receive their diploma until the incomplete has been removed.
  2. A total of 130 semester hours of university work. No more than 6 semester hours earned by correspondence or extension courses, and no more than a total of 30 hours of non-residence work (including correspondence or extension courses, credit by examination, credit for specialized training in the armed forces) can be applied toward meeting requirements for graduation. The last 33 semester hours must be taken in residence at Mississippi College. A maximum of 65 sem. hours learned at a junior/ community college can be applied toward a degree at Mississippi College.
  3. Compliance with the general graduation requirements of Mississippi College.
  4. A grade of C or higher in each nursing course.

The School of Nursing reserves the right to withhold a degree of any student deemed unsuitable for the practice of nursing.

Further information pertaining to graduation may be found in the Academic Information  section of the Undergraduate Catalog. 

Honors Courses

By invitation of the Honors Council; see Honors Program  section of Undergraduate Catalog.


Bachelor of Science in Nursing



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