News Release

CHICAGO — DePaul University’s School of Nursing has received regulatory approval to expand its Master’s Entry into Nursing Practice degree program this fall to a new facility at Rosalind Franklin University of Medicine and Science in North Chicago. DePaul formed the Alliance for Health Sciences with Rosalind Franklin last year.

The approval this month was granted by the Board of Nursing of the Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation.

This specialized master’s degree is one of the few programs designed to allow those with science or nonscience undergraduate degrees to directly enter into the nursing profession as registered nurses. The new program, which is accepting applicants for classes that begin in the 2013-2014 academic year, replicates the curriculum and facilities that are part of DePaul’s program based in the College of Health and Science on the Lincoln Park Campus. That program has seen significant growth in recent years and currently has a class of more than 200 students.

According to studies by the Illinois Center for Nursing, the health care industry is facing a significant shortage of nurses both nationally and in Illinois. By 2020, it is estimated that the national vacancy rate for nursing professionals will jump 20 percent, or 800,000 nurses. Illinois’ vacancy rate also is expected to rise, to 11 percent by 2015. Shortages in the nursing workforce primarily have been the result of limited capacity in the nation’s baccalaureate and graduate nursing programs.

“There is growing demand for nursing professionals with ever greater levels of skill, which our program is ideally suited to meet,” said William Cody, director of DePaul’s School of Nursing. “The expansion of the Master’s Entry into Nursing Practice program at the Rosalind Franklin campus in Lake County will allow us to prepare students across a significant geographic region, including those in southern Wisconsin.”

The DePaul program will be the only master’s degree program of this type offered in Lake County.

DePaul’s nursing program will be housed in a new 73,000-square-foot facility, the Rothstein Warden Centennial Learning Center, currently under construction at Rosalind Franklin University’s campus. The expanded nursing program will be able to accommodate two cohorts of 24 students each — one beginning in the fall quarter and the other in winter.

“DePaul’s nursing program will be housed among many other health care programs at the new learning center, - enhancing collaboration opportunities for health care teams that are at the heart of the DePaul-Rosalind Franklin Alliance,” said Judith Stoecker, vice dean of the College of Health Professions. “Adding nursing to this educational mix will boost the team approach to health care delivery and patient-centered care.”  

An open house for prospective students interested in the nursing program as well as other health care professions will be held April 27 at Rosalind Franklin University, 3333 Green Bay Road, North Chicago. Those interested in attending may RSVP at Rosalind Franklin University’s website, http://www.rosalindfranklin.edu or by calling 847-578-3204.

In recent years, DePaul has expanded its education programs in the sciences, establishing the College of Science and Health and building two high-tech facilities designed specifically for science instruction. There are more than 3,200 students enrolled in the college. Its multidisciplinary health sciences degree, established in 2011, is DePaul’s fastest-growing undergraduate program with more than 440 students.

The DePaul-Rosalind Franklin Alliance for Health Sciences established was formed last year and is designed to establish curricular pathways for DePaul students to graduate from professional degree programs at Rosalind Franklin while expanding and strengthening academic programs at both schools. It also fosters collaboration between faculties of the two institutions and creates additional research opportunities for students.

About DePaul University

With approximately 25,000 students, DePaul is the largest Catholic university in the United States and the largest private, nonprofit university in the Midwest. The university offers about 275 graduate and undergraduate programs of study on three Chicago and two suburban campuses. Founded in 1898, DePaul University remains committed to providing a quality education through personal attention to students from a wide range of backgrounds. More at www.depaul.edu.

About Rosalind Franklin University of Medicine and Science

Formed in 1912 as the Chicago Hospital-College of Medicine, Rosalind Franklin University of Medicine and Science is a national leader in interprofessional medical and healthcare education, offering a doctor of medicine program through the Chicago Medical School, doctor of podiatric medicine program through the Dr. William M. Scholl College of Podiatric Medicine, and a range of degrees through its College of Health Professions, including nurse anesthesia, nutrition, physical therapy, pathologists’ assistant and physician assistant, and a doctor of pharmacy through its College of Pharmacy that welcomed its first class in August 2011. The University also offers advanced biomedical degrees through the School of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies. For more information, please visit www.rosalindfranklin.edu.

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