Missouri State University
Nursing Blog

Welcome to the Department of Nursing and MSU!

(as originally posted by Jessica Clements)

Welcome Weekend 2014 introduces new Bears to campus life and welcomes returning students back to campus. Highlights of the weekend include Friday night’s Playfair, Saturday night’s Bear Bash and Sunday’s afternoon lineup of New Student Convocation, Bear Path and New Student Festival.

Key details

  • What: Welcome Weekend 2014
  • When: Friday, August 15- Sunday, August 17
  • Where: All over campus!

View more information about Welcome Weekend on MSU Mobile, available for both iOS and Android.

Share your story

Help us spread the word about Welcome Weekend 2014 to the Missouri State and local communities by sharing it on social media. If you attend any of the weekend’s events, we want to hear about your experience! We encourage you to join the online conversation throughout the weekend by posting about it on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram and tagging your posts with the official hashtag: #FindYourPlace.

Make your post social media savvy

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Attention Generic BSN 2015 Applicants

The 2015 Generic BSN Application is now available on the Nursing Department website: http://www.missouristate.edu/nursing/undergraduate/default.htm

There are a few changes to note with the new application:

  1. Per 2014/2015 Catalog requirements: You must now have completed or “in progress” 56 or more credit hours of general education coursework and Nursing prerequisite coursework by the end of the Spring semester you are applying. That means you may only apply to the program with no more than 3 credit hours of outstanding coursework (not including NUR 472: Research Methods and Scholarly Writing).
  2. We have updated our technical standards- which may be found on the last page of the application.
  3. There will be a $50 application fee that will be due at the time you turn in your application.
  4. Under the section “Relevant Experience” (a supplement to your resume) we suggest you obtain the following: Healthcare Experience, Community Service and Leadership Experience. Note that healthcare experience will count only as a paid opportunity having client/patient contact.
  5. New job shadow requirements and documentation form. The new form can be found on page 9 of the application. Experience should be in an acute care setting (hospital) with a Nurse working as an RN. The new form is required for all 2015 applicants.
    Points will now be deducted from students’ overall scoring who submit an incomplete application packet on first attempt.
    Application workshops will be made available during the Fall semester.
  6. No individual application review appointments will be made available. Please utilize the workshop for question asking. There will be a review period at the end of each workshop, so bring a rough draft of your application and it will be reviewed prior to submission.

In addition to the above changes, please note the following changes that will affect 2015 Applicants:

  • Honors College Requirements: For honors college students who will be applying in 2015, the minimum GPA requirement to remain a provisional admission student has been raised to 3.60 CUM.
  • ROTC Provisional Admission: In 2015, we have allowed one seat to be set aside for a student who is both ROTC and Nursing. They must meet all general requirements as well as possess a 3.60 or higher for their GPA The ROTC program will choose among the candidates who will meet the requirements and work with the Department of Nursing on their student selection.
  • Prerequisite Passing Grade Change: Per the 2014/2015 Catalog, Nursing prerequisite coursework must be passed with a C or higher.

If you have any questions regarding the above material, please contact:

Kami Gollhofer
Academic Advisor- Marketing, Recruitment and Retention Specialist


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Program Spotlight: Doctorate of Nurse Practitioner (DNP)

This month we focus our blog the Doctorate of Nurse Practitioner (DNP) program. We have offered an NP program at Missouri State for over eighteen years and have recently transitioned the previous Masters level program into the Doctorate level program it is today.

The program is overseen by Program Director, Dr. Susan Berg, DNP, APRN, FNP-BC who recently sat down to discuss the 100% AANP exam pass rate on first attempt for the 2013 academic year. The AANP exam is a required national certification to become a Nurse Practitioner “This isn’t the first year for the FNP program to receive high scores” she states. “Our program has been in existence for eighteen years, with sixteen years’ worth of pass rates. Fifteen of those years have received a 100% first attempt pass score.” Those scores reflect the reason why our DNP program is such the success it is today. We have consistently scored higher than the national average in every category on the test.

Dr. Berg has been with the department for seven years. Are you curious to know what a “Day in the Life” is like for this DNP Program Director? Read on to see excerpts from a candid interview…

What is your typical day like? 

“A typical day for me consists of replying to prospective and current graduate students e-mails, planning admissions, orientations, marketing, recruiting, graduation, preceptor events, planning and attending committee meetings. Creating/revising courses and lectures.  I spend time keeping up with NP alumni by phone, e-mail, text. It is not unusual for an alumni to call to ask me a clinical or networking question. Much of my time is spent ensuring ways to make our students successful, making sure we are teaching with the current evidence-based materials and information, and giving them the best clinical education possible. I also help to manage MSU care, our NP run clinic at the Kitchen Medical Clinic.”

What is one thing people would be surprised to learn about you?

“I was in the Naval Reserve for eleven years as a NP. Growing up in the DFW area, I am an avid Dallas Cowboys fan. Football season is my favorite time of year. I have been to most Indian reservations and national parks in the West. I wasn’t accepted into the Mizzou nursing program the first time I applied. I was on a waiting list and did end up making it in. I was a waitress at a restaurant in Branson when I had my first child at age 20. I became aware that I had to make the changes in my life to keep my goals in line with being a nurse and having a career that I could rely on myself.  I am most proud of my BSN degree because I was not confident that I could do it being a single mom.”

What did you want to be when you grew up?

“As far as I can remember I wanted to be a teacher or a nurse. With this job I do both and absolutely love it. It is my dream job.”

When or how did you select your current academic field/specialty?

“I started nursing school at the University of Texas Pan American-on the Mexico border and finished my BSN at the University of Missouri. I started my RN career in cardiology and my goal was to be a flight nurse. I soon learned my motion sickness prevented this as an option so after three years as a RN I went to NP school here at (then) SMSU. I job shadowed CRNA and NP’s and decided the NP track was the right fit for me. I got into academics after doing some guest lecturing and found that I really enjoy the research and the preparation to present the best information to the students.”

If you could go back and give advice to your college self, what would you say?

“You are doing a good job, keep up the hard work, it will be worth it. I have always prided myself on the 4.0 mentality. I wish I could go back and tell myself that it is ok to focus on the A but more important to focus on the understanding of the material, not just what the teacher wants for the A. I set aside blocks of time similar to a full-time job for studying when I was going through my BSN and that really paid off for me.”

Give one great book recommendation.

“The Hot Zone by Richard Preston about Ebola virus is very interesting and peaked my interest in communicable disease.”

To someone in a non-academic field, how do you describe your research/job?

“It is basically looking at the science and research that has already been proven to be effective and determining if that research can be applied in a clinical setting in our area. I advise students on this type of research which is called translational research. Applying what is known to work into the clinical setting and evaluating that it made a difference.  My particular interests are vestibular (inner ear) disorders and issues pertaining to cultural competence in healthcare.”

What are you currently interested in that’s not related to your field?

“I love all things forensics. I read only non-fiction books for pleasure and most of them have a forensic theme. I watch mysteries, 48 hours, dateline investigates, etc. I love to travel. I have been to most of the states in the continental US. I also spend most of my free time right now traveling the country to support my two children that are in college wrestling and competitive cheerleading.”


To find out more about the DNP program and its requirements, visit the website at http://www.missouristate.edu/nursing/doctor/default.htm.

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Student Opportunities

Whether you want to develop your professional skills or become more involved in your major, the Nursing Department supports a variety of opportunities.

Network with your peers and build relationships within the department by joining one of our student organizations:

  • Student Nurse Organization (SNO) Membership in SNO is open to all pre-nursing and BSN students. Members participate in community outreach projects that partner with different organizations in the community each semester. As a member of SNO, students will be involved in many activities supported by organizations with the goal of promoting health awareness among members of the community. In addition to volunteer work in the community, SNO also provides academic support and professional development opportunities to its members. Visit the Spring Issue of Bears that Care, page 4, to gain information on how to become a part of the SNO organization.
  • Family Nurse Practitioner Student Association As a member of the Family Nurse Practitioner Student Association, students have the opportunity to listen to speakers who are professionals in the nursing field. Informational discussions are also held each semester for members to learn and discuss new developments. This organization provides students with the opportunity to network and learn more about the capacities in which family nurse practitioners are employed. Short-term study away trips are also organized so that group members, along with other students in the program, can work with a group that provides health care in another country. For more information, contact FNPSA chair Dr. Maria Kenneally at MKenneally@MissouriState.edu.
  • Sigma Theta Tau-Theta Lambda Chapter This nursing honor society invites junior and senior level students who are in the top 33% of their class to join an organization of nursing professionals to discuss the latest in nursing research, nurse education, and clinical education. Members of Sigma Theta Tau participate in research and present at conferences. The combination of students and professionals creates mentorship relationships among members. For more information on this international organization, please visit http://www.nursingsociety.org/Pages/default.aspx.
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