Nursing Program Begins at BC By Jacqueline Puglisi | September 22, 2011 | RSS Starting in October, Bluefield College will launch its new online nursing program that will provide registered nurses with the chance to obtain their bachelor’s degree. Dr. Carolyn Lewis’s beaming smile reflects her excitement to lead BC’s new online nursing program. Beginning Oct. 24, BC will launch online classes to kick off the latest addition to the accelerated degree completion programs. Lewis, professor and chair of the nursing program, has received a high level of interest from students in the area, as well as Roanoke and Richmond. With 15 applicants already accepted and more applications coming in, Lewis predicts each class will have 25 to 30 students. The program gives registered nurses (RNs) who have an associate’s degree in nursing the opportunity to advance in their career and receive their bachelor’s degree (BS N). Each eight-week course will provide students with online classroom as well as hands-on training they need to advance in their career. The program provides 37 credits of nursing classes in addition to general education classes required for graduation. Though all nursing classes are currently online, Lewis would like to offer some traditional classroom courses in the future. Dr. Carolyn Lewis Chair of The Nursing Division Lewis said her goal is to make students as successful as possible and she would love to see students go on to achieve even higher degrees after graduating from BC. “We’re going to make them successful,” she said. “I am here to help them be successful. I am here to advocate and I’m here for those nurses that want to go back for higher education.” Lewis is originally from Tazewell and was thrilled to make a move in her career that would return her home. Before accepting her position at BC she served roughly 12 years as CEO Executive Director for the American Nurses Credentialing Center. After her time at ANCC she was the executive director for consolidating continuing education in medicine, dentistry, allied health, nursing and pharmacy at the University of Kentucky. She then worked at Spalding University as the chair of nursing and helped start the school’s RN-to-BSN program. She was approached by a headhunter with the position at BC. Lewis felt a calling to return to the county where she grew up and help the people of her community achieve their goals. She was excited about the position and prayed with her husband and pastor about returning to Tazewell County. “I know that it’s where God wanted me to go,” she said. Lewis also said she was very impressed with the vision and mission for the college both Dr. Olive and Dr. Shippey conveyed during her interview. She said they were very kind and made her feel at ease. She felt a desire to work for people who had such enthusiasm for the school and its students. Lewis also sees positive changes for BC and the surrounding area because of the new program. Not only will it bring more students into the general education classes but will also bring up people who have a Christ-centered passion for healthcare. Lewis said by having that as a forefront there is no way to go but up.