An Interview with Dr. Agnes Richardson, Chairperson
Delaware State University Department of Nursing
A Welcome from the Department of Nursing!
If you are a current Wesley College student thinking about finishing your degree at Delaware State University, please know that we are excited to see you, and will do our best not only to welcome you with open arms, but to do everything in our power to keep you on track for a high-quality degree that allows you to pass the NCLEX and get you successfully launched into your professional career.
Our firm belief at Delaware State University is “Students First!” and we look forward to proving that to you. Below I’ve tried to answer some of the most important questions you may have.
- What’s your general message for Wesley College students interested in joining the Delaware State University Nursing Program next year?
The Nursing Program at Delaware State University was founded 1) to recognize students desiring to reach academic potential by traditional means; 2) to provide opportunity students with social and economic problems who could not afford a higher education; and 3) to engage our students as individuals while providing a strong foundation for a successful professional career.
We are caring and supportive of our students, and we endeavor to ensure that all Baccalaureate-prepared nursing graduates are prepared professionally to provide compassionate and culturally competent evidence-based health care to meet the current and future needs of individuals, families, and communities within the state of Delaware, the nation, and the international environment.
- Will joining the DSU Nursing Program necessarily mean that it will take me longer to finish my degree?
No. We will work individually with each student arriving from Wesley College to ensure that we keep them on track to graduate in a timely fashion. The fact that both programs are ACEN-accredited and both focus closely on what is necessary to pass NCLEX makes this easier to do. Interested students should contact me as soon as possible, with a transcript, so that we can do an individual audit, in case we need to recommend any Summer Session courses.
- What kind of placements does the DSU Nursing Program have available for clinical placements?
Our clinical placements are the same, and/or similar to Wesley’s clinical placement. We work closely with all major hospitals in the area, and we are particularly strengthening our institutional ties to Christiana Care. As the program grows, we will be expanding our clinical sites to ensure we accommodate all of our students with the high-quality placement that leads both to strong skills development and a boost toward beginning their career after graduation.
- Is the DSU Nursing Program accredited by ACEN like the Wesley Program is?
We are both are accredited by the Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing (ACEN) and regulated and fully approved by the Delaware Board of Nursing. During our reaccreditation, Delaware State University (2019) and Wesley (2020) were both granted continuation of accreditation for eight years which is the longest period a program can be reaccredited for before a program’s next reaccreditation. Several Department of Nursing faculty also serve as ACEN site visitors to other programs, so we stay closely aware of standards and changes.
Delaware State University has been consistently rated among the TOP HBCU Nursing Schools for the past several years.
- How well do DSU Nursing seniors score on the NCLEX?
Last year we had a 100% NCLEX pass rate. We are consistently well above the 80% recommended benchmark, usually in the 90th percentiles. We do intensive work during the students’ last semester to better prepare them for NCLEX success.
- Are there any new opportunities that I will find in the DSU Nursing Program?
Extensive community outreach efforts and community research opportunities are available for faculty and students. Also, we have faculty members in collaboration with Global outreach initiatives, including opportunities for outreach in Kenya, Ghana, Cuba, and the Gambia; as well consulting and collaborating opportunities with internationally recognized organizations such as Ghana’s Fatoumatta Bah Barrow Foundation in developing international outreach for student experiences.
- Could you briefly describe the philosophy and vision of the DSU Nursing Program?
The mission of the baccalaureate and master’s nursing programs align with the mission and core values of Delaware State University, as well as the College of Health & Behavioral Sciences. The bachelor’s and master’s-level nursing programs provide exceptional educational opportunities for students of diverse backgrounds. The baccalaureate program prepares entry-level nurses to practice competently and safely in a variety of health care settings including preparation for future specialization and graduate study. The master’s program specializes in preparing graduates to be nursing leaders in their field.
From a global perspective, the master’s program also fosters principles and practices that provide a framework for diverse relationships in nursing practice, research, and education. Baccalaureate and master’s-prepared nursing graduates are prepared professionally to provide compassionate and culturally competent evidence-based health care to meet the current and future needs of individuals, families, and communities within the state of Delaware, the nation, and the international environment.
Still have other questions?
Feel free to write me at arichardson [at] desu.edu or give the Department a call at 302.857.6750. We are ready and waiting to help make this transition a success for you!