Students Earn Associate of Applied Science in Registered Nursing

June 6, 2022

Registered Nursing  

The ASU-Beebe 2022 Spring Commencement included the first class of students to earn their Associate of Applied Science in Nursing (AASN) for Registered Nursing degree. Pictured, from left, are Joseph Scott, Director of Allied Health; Cindy Smith, Director of Nursing; Charity Elisabeth Wood; Jessica Sewell; Tiffany Ray, Registered Nursing Instructor; Alvie Brannon; April McMurphy; Cody William Wilkerson; Dr. Jennifer Methvin, ASU-Beebe Chancellor; and Dr. Jason Goodner, Vice Chancellor for Academics.

Students earning their AASN degree were Alvie Brannon of Jonesboro; April McMurphy of Beebe; Jessica Sewell of Judsonia; Cody William Wilkerson of Austin; and Charity Elisabeth Wood of North Little Rock.

“We congratulate these students on this achievement,” said Cindy Smith, Director of Nursing. “The addition of this degree has allowed our students the opportunity to advance in the nursing field, as well as provide a greater impact on the healthcare community.”

The Associate of Applied Science Nursing Degree is a bridge program that provides a pathway for students who have completed ​​the L​icensed Practical Nursing or ​Paramedics program to advance in their careers and the potential to earn a higher salary.  Students who complete the degree requirements and successfully pass the National Council Licensure Exam (NCLEX) will hold the credential of Registered Nurse (RN).

“Our Practical Nursing program has continuously received high ratings and pass rates over the years,” Smith said. “Our RN program and recent graduates are no different as evidenced by achieving a 100% pass rate on the NCLEX this year.” 

Initially, a community assessment resulted in the need for qualified nurses in central Arkansas. The AASN curriculum was then developed and submitted with the ​degree program proposal for review by the Arkansas State Board of Nursing, the ASU System Board of Trustees, and the Arkansas ​Higher Education Coordinating Board.  ASU-Beebe was officially approved to offer the AASN degree program in 2021.    

Dr. Jason Goodner, Vice Chancellor for Academics and Chief Academic Officer said, "ASU-Beebe has been a beacon for social mobility in central Arkansas and beyond for well over 90 years.  This degree program continues that trend while at the same time filling a critical employment gap within the medical community we support.”

Dr. Jennifer Methvin, Chancellor of ASU-Beebe said, “This program provides yet another pathway for students interested in progressing their careers in nursing.  My congratulations to our faculty and staff who have worked hard to develop the program and assist those students seeking a higher degree in nursing. This is an example of how they serve our students and communities every day.”

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