Big Country

Cisco nursing program graduates hopeful the 2-year program will be resurrected

Nursing program at Cisco College

Abilene, Texas - A group of future nurses who enrolled in Cisco College's Associate Nursing Degree program were dealt a blow in January 2012.

During their last year, they found out the program was losing accreditation.

"We were not aware until about a month into the program that there were any problems at all," said Martee Tebow, 2012 Cisco Nursing ADN graduate.

Now the program has improved low test scores by almost 30 percent compared to graduates from five years ago.

While the improvement is not enough to save the Associate's Program, it may continue on as a four year program.

For the class of 2012, approval for their program was stripped right before their class got the highest passing scores in five years.

"It was tough, but through all the blood, sweat and tears, we were a committed group," said Amber Binkley, 2012 Cisco ADN graduate. "We were a supportive group and I think that's really what helped us through everything."

Both Tebow and Binkley work at Hendrick Medical Center and credit their experience at Cisco with getting them there.

"Teamwork and really helping each other out," said Binkley. "Studying and being resources for each other. That was a very big part of our group."

"Once you're in the program, changing programs is very difficult, so when we became aware of the problem with the school we just decided we were going to have to overcome and adapt," Tebow said.

"I think we proved ourselves," Binkley said. "Best number in five years. I think we have."

The Regional Dean at Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center (TTUHSC) School of Nursing Pearl Merritt provided a statement about the future plans of their nursing program.

"Cisco College is expecting to be approved by the Board of Nursing April 18th for the LVN to RN Program. We have been working on this innovative Concept Based Curriculum which will be the first in the state which allows students to utilize their critical thinking skills . Once we receive approval of the program we plan on admitting a cohort of 35 students starting this fall. The partnership with Texas Tech University Health Science Center and Cisco College will allow for a smoother transition for the LVN to receive their Associate Degree then transition on to the BSN Program with Texas Tech."

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