College of Distinction for nursing 2020 November 6, 2020 (Jackson, Miss.) - Colleges of Distinction (COD) has awarded top honors to Belhaven University's School of Nursing for its quality programs and focus on student success.

Dr. Amy Rex Smith, professor and dean of Belhaven's School of Nursing, believes strong faculty, connections with students, and commitment to academic excellence is key to the department's success. “Our graduation rates, licensure pass-rates, and high-employment rates are a testament to the value of our nursing program,” said Smith.

COD evaluates schools based on their ability to provide a high-quality student experience, as well as a thorough liberal arts education. After a comprehensive vetting process, they selected schools based on accreditation, breadth of program, cultivating careers, learning opportunities, mastery of standardized exams, networking, and a track record for success.

“Belhaven's School of Nursing is receiving this prestigious award because of its distinguishing characteristics of being a rigorous, Christian-based nursing program that assists our 53 students to develop into highly-educated, compassionate nurses,” said Assistant Professor of Nursing Dr. Tina D. McDyess. “The reputation of developing and graduating good, quality nurses who are compassionate about the care that they provide precedes the program.”

According to COD, the institutions in this year's list are highly regarded for their commitment to engaged students, great teaching, vibrant communities, and successful outcomes. The honorees go the extra mile with their cutting-edge nursing degrees and support future nurses along their undergraduate journey.

“I see all kinds and variations of success after our students graduate from our nursing program,” said Smith. “Some transition into their careers by enrolling in nurse residency programs. We have had several enroll in the nurse residency at Vanderbilt University.One of our graduates was selected in 2018 as the Mississippi Nurse Rookie of the Year by the Mississippi Nurses' Association.Many have successfully completed graduate programs and are working as advanced practice nurses.One of our others graduates has aspirations to be a nurse scientist and is now pursuing a Ph.D. in nursing.”