The mission of the Whitson-Hester School of Nursing (WHSON) furthers the mission of the University as a provider of a strong academic program in nursing with a special commitment to meeting the health care needs of the diverse population of the Upper Cumberland region of Tennessee. The goal of the nursing program is to prepare graduates with a commitment to lifelong success as nursing leaders in rural and urban areas who are committed to professional nursing standards, open to the changes occurring in a global health care system, and motivated to improve the health status of individuals, groups, and communities.
The WHSON offers an undergraduate course of study leading to a Baccalaureate Degree in Nursing. The program prepares students as generalist professional nurses eligible to take the state licensure exam. Innovative approaches with the delivery of the program also provide the opportunity for diploma and associate degree registered nurses and students with previous non-nursing baccalaureate degrees to complete their Baccalaureate Degree in Nursing. The WHSON continuously seeks to provide not only undergraduate education—but assesses the futuristic needs for graduate education thru joint appointments with other universities and/or interprofessional collaboration. Currently, a master’s degree in nursing is offered through the collaborative system of the Tennessee Board of Regents schools through online delivery.
Curriculum development is an ongoing process. The changes in the curriculum are based on the following: the American Association of Colleges of Nursing “The Essentials of Baccalaureate Education for Professional Nursing Practice”, professional standards, assessment of student needs, program evaluation outcome measures, and the health care marketplace. The faculty considers the research literature and incorporates evidence based practice in nursing and health care as well as academic and clinical position papers developed by professional groups.
Instruction, which includes classroom teaching and clinical supervision, is the major component of the faculty role in the
Shared governance is an integral part of the mission of the