SHU's First Accelerated Nursing Grads All Pass Their NCLEX Board Exams

FAIRFIELD, Conn.—All of the students who graduated as part of the first cohort of the second degree accelerated bachelor of science in nursing (SDA) program in December 2021 have passed their NCLEX nursing board exams. 

The SDA program is part of the Dr. Susan L. Davis, R.N., & Richard J. Henley College of Nursing. Students who took the exam―a standardized test to determine their competency―graduated from SHU’s program in December. 

Students who already have a bachelor’s degree in another subject can earn a bachelor’s in nursing in 15 months through the SDA program, led by Heather Ferrillo, assistant professor and program director, and Angela Chlebowski, assistant director. The 17 students in the inaugural class included accountants, psychology majors, health science majors and others. 

“The diversity of the students’ backgrounds blends well into nursing,” said Karen Daley, dean of DHCON. “Because it is an accelerated and highly rigorous curriculum, it is an intense 15-month experience. The phenomenal faculty are key to mentoring, coaching and setting the bar high so the students can succeed in the program and on their nursing boards. We are humbled and proud of this achievement by the inaugural cohort of the SDA program.”

This news comes on the heels of the outstanding results from SHU’s College of Health Professions (CHP) class of 2021 on the national licensure exams for their chosen careers. The exams are standardized tests designed for graduates of each program, and candidates must pass to proceed in their professions.

The licensure exam pass rates were 100% for physical therapy (PT), 100% for athletic training, 99% for occupational therapy, 97% for speech language pathology and 90% for physician assistant (PA).


About Sacred Heart University

As the second-largest independent Catholic university in New England, and one of the fastest-growing in the U.S., Sacred Heart University is a national leader in shaping higher education for the 21st century. SHU offers nearly 90 undergraduate, graduate, doctoral and certificate programs on its Fairfield, Conn., campus. Sacred Heart also has satellites in Connecticut, Luxembourg and Ireland and offers online programs. More than 9,000 students attend the University’s nine colleges and schools: Arts & Sciences; Communication, Media & the Arts; Social Work; Computer Science & Engineering; Health Professions; the Isabelle Farrington College of Education & Human Development; the Jack Welch College of Business & Technology; the Dr. Susan L. Davis, R.N., & Richard J. Henley College of Nursing; and St. Vincent’s College. Sacred Heart stands out from other Catholic institutions as it was established and led by laity. The contemporary Catholic university is rooted in the rich Catholic intellectual tradition and the liberal arts, and at the same time cultivates students to be forward thinkers who enact change—in their own lives, professions and in their communities. The Princeton Review includes SHU in its Best 387 Colleges–2022 Edition, “Best Northeastern” and Best Business Schools–2022 Edition. Sacred Heart is home to the award-winning, NPR-affiliated radio station, WSHU, a Division I athletics program and an impressive performing arts program that includes choir, band, dance and theatre. www.sacredheart.edu


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