Austin Community College board approves first bachelor’s degree program

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Update: The Austin Community College District board of trustees approved the college’s first bachelor’s degree with its new RN-to-BSN program. Nearly 8,000 registered nurses in the ACC service area qualify for the program, which is the only one of its kind in Central Texas.

At its monthly meeting on Dec. 4, the Austin Community College board of trustees approved two new degree programs: an RN-to-BSN Bachelor’s of Science in Nursing degree and an Associate of Applied Science in Emergency Management degree.

The RN-to-BSN bachelor’s program “will provide a high quality, affordable pathway” for registered nurses with an associate’s degree looking to earn a bachelor’s, according to a proposal submitted by ACC Vice President of Instruction Mike Midgely and ACC President and CEO Richard Rhodes.

The need for the degree, they wrote, is confirmed by labor market information.

The program will not require additional facilities or equipment, according to the proposal. Tuition paid by students in the newly approved RN-to-BSN program will account for faculty and staff costs.

The proposal included a curriculum drafted in just three months by the college district’s nursing department.

The Associate of Applied Science in Emergency Management program will provide students preparation for entry-level positions in emergency management, according to a proposal also submitted by Midgely and Rhodes.

The new degree program will be funded primarily by the 2014 bond referendum, which is also funding the construction of a new first responder training center at ACC’s Hays Campus in Kyle. Construction of the center is expected to be completed by summer 2018, and classes will begin in the fall.

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Emma Freer

Emma Freer began covering Central Austin for Community Impact Newspaper in 2017. In addition to reporting on local businesses, she also writes about the city's higher education community and topics such as the DACA program, local animal shelters' response to Hurricane Harvey and redistricting in Texas. She recently graduated from Columbia Journalism School.

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