The Mesquite Online News - Texas A&M University-San Antonio

Local universities partner to keep nursing students on track

Texas A&M University-San Antonio and the University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio (UT Health) have designed a pathway for A&M-San Antonio students to pursue an education in nursing.

The two institutions began working together last August to develop a plan that would benefit A&M-San Antonio students to continue their education in the nursing field.

“Through the agreement, students will not waste time, energy, or money taking the wrong classes that do not ultimately help them accomplish their goal of becoming a baccalaureate prepared nurse,” said David Byrd, associate dean for admissions and student services at UT Health School of Nursing.

The pathway is to help A&M-San Antonio students stay on track to gain acceptances into UT Health. Students must still apply to UT Health and meet admission requirements.

“There are no guaranteed slots,” said Michael O’Brien, provost and vice president for academic affairs.

The institutions have provided two options for students to gain acceptance into UT Health San Antonio School of Nursing.

Students may complete their prerequisites at A&M-San Antonio then transfer to UT Health to complete their bachelor’s degree. Option two is for the student to complete their bachelor’s at A&M-San Antonio and continue their education with UT Health.

“Students should remain in close contact with their advisors at A&M-SA and the admissions counselors at UT Health,” Byrd said. “We can collaborate to answer any questions students might have regarding the courses to take or the sequence to follow.”

Students interested in transferring to UT Health must earn a minimum of 80 TEAS and a 69 on the reading portion. Student must have a 3.6 grade point average (GPA) in math and science courses and have an overall GPA of 3.6.

“As students near the completion of their required coursework that is articulated in the agreement, they should focus on the Test of Essential Academic Skills (TEAS),” Byrd said. “The coursework coupled with the TEAS exam make up the bulk of the criteria nursing programs will utilize for admission.”

The A&M-San Antonio pre-health society student organization is excited about new opportunities the pathway brings to students. The pre-health society is a student-led organization is committed to providing educational support and volunteer opportunities for the campus pre-health community.

“This partnership will help keep the organization aware that there is a degree plan for students wanting to become a nurse,” said senior Ruby Herrera, biology major and president of the pre-health society. “In the case that a student decides to switch into the field of nursing we can inform them that they can talk to an advisor about the degree plan.”

“The new pathway will provide A&M-San Antonio students the opportunity to experience both institutions while providing them with quality education and giving student the tools they need to be successful,” O’Brien said.

While students are completing the prerequisites or bachelor’s degree at A&M-San Antonio, it is important to remember that all classes are important.

History, psychology and mathematics give students the foundation of their educational career.

“It’s those skills that you get in writing, reasoning and logic that are going to help you in your career,” O’Brien said.

Changes are happening on campus at A&M-San Antonio. The most visible change is the construction of the science and technology building which is under the expected budget.

This will allow the university to add additional 22,000 square feet to the science and technology building.

“We are going to move the psychology department over there,” O’Brien said. “For example, they’ll have experimental labs we’re going to have water labs in that new piece that we were not able accommodate in the main building itself.”

The STEM building will allow students to have access to both state of the art equipment and professors, in one location. This will not only benefit students wanting to pursue a degree in nursing but all science and technology students.

“I want people to find what they’re passionate about, because you don’t really want a job you want a profession,” O’Brien said. “You want something that makes you look forward to going to work.”

Students wanting more information about the pathway can visit the admissions office on campus at A&M-San Antonio or UT Health’s School of Nursing website.

About the Author

Krystal Garza
Krystal Nycole Garza is a Communications major with a minor in History. She's a student worker in the Welcome Center. She has an associate degree in Digital Art and a second in Fine Arts. She was a reporter for the PAC pulse in spring 2016. Her art work has been shown at Palo Alto college and San Antonio College student shows. She participated in Disney College Program in May of 2014 through January 2015 and is now part of the Disney Alumni Association.

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