Bachelor of Science in Nursing


If you are energized by helping others and want each person to experience their best, and healthiest life, in our nursing program you can gain the skills and confidence to impact healthcare and the lives you will touch.

Our graduates work at Mayo Clinic Health System, Baylor University, Rush University Medical Center, Genesis Health System, UnityPoint, University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics, Loyola University Medical Center.

BSN Fact Sheet (pdf)
Accelerated BSN Fact Sheet (pdf)


Ambrose Advantages

  • Small Classes, High Level of Support
  • Hands-On Learning
  • State-of-the-Art Facilities
  • Faculty With More Than 300 Years of Combined Nursing Experience

students with mannequin

nursing students sitting

professor and student

The way we approach nursing students and healthcare sets the example of what it means to be deeply person-focused. We'll be partners throughout your education because we share your care, compassion, and drive to do what's best for those we serve. At SAU, become a highly skilled, ethical nurse who empowers each person in their healthcare goals.

See Our Nursing Program Fact Sheet (pdf)


Bee the Difference

We make an impact on campus and in the community. In 2018, more than 600 students took part in Bee the Difference Day and helped 120 campus neighbors get their yards ready for winter. It is work, fun – and so rewarding.


More Information on the Nursing Program

What will I learn?

Our curriculum places special emphasis on innovation, evidence-based practice, whole person caring, service, social justice, professional trends, and biomedical ethics.

Early in your studies, you learn physical examination techniques, communication skills, health assessment, development of interventions, and evaluation of patient outcomes. You will learn to use advanced electronic data and patient record data management systems.

You will experience real health care environments through clinical rotations in obstetrics, pediatrics, medical-surgical, mental health, and community health. In your last year of the program, you'll complete a semester-long preceptorship in your area of interest. You can practice in acute care and community settings.

We want you to succeed in nursing, so standardized testing prep is part of the curriculum. Students complete competency exams throughout the program to determine their knowledge and readiness for the NCLEX nursing licensure exam.

How can I supplement my classroom learning?
  • Get involved! You can participate in a range of service-learning projects, from flu immunizations clinics to community health fairs.
  • Join the St. Ambrose Student Nursing Association. Our members organize, represent, and mentor students preparing for initial licensure as registered nurses and those enrolled in baccalaureate completion programs.
  • Gain a better sense of world health issues and other cultures. Study abroad in Australia, Ecuador, England, Ireland, New Zealand, or other countries. Click here to search our programs. 
  • Work in a nursing setting. This will boost your communication, organization, and early professional development.
  • Network at statewide student nursing conventions and interview with potential employers.
  • Consider the Peace Corps. SAU offers Peace Corps Prep, a program that makes you a stronger candidate for volunteer positions within the Peace Corps or other service programs. Most students can earn the certificate – awarded by the Peace Corps – without taking extra courses. Click here to learn more or talk to your faculty advisor.
Study Abroad

You've heard people say it before: "College will be the greatest time of your life!" With Study Abroad, you can add even more to your college years.

You can study in another country in a semester-long or short-term study abroad program (with a few offered during spring and winterim breaks). No matter the duration, these trips deepen your professional education while earning credit toward graduation.

There are also opportunities through an exchange program, an overseas internship, or volunteering. The limits for Study Abroad are only ones you set for yourself! SAU students have studied in Italy, Costa Rica, Australia, Korea, United Kingdom, Spain, Ecuador, Japan, Germany, Peru, Cyprus, Croatia, Belize, Canada, Chile, and more.

SAU students returning from their Study Abroad locations talk about their time away as life-changing – personally, emotionally, culturally, and academically.

Click here to search our Study Abroad programs, and for general information click here.

Where will I learn?

SAU offers the best BSN program in the Midwest, and our deep commitment to your education is readily apparent in our classroom facilities and our community connections.

The Nursing Department is located in the Center for Health Sciences Education on the Genesis Medical Center West campus. Our state-of-the-art simulation and hospital lab allow students to safely practice and rehearse skills before working with real patients. If you have a four-year degree, you may be eligible for the BSN Accelerated program and take accelerated classes toward your BSN.

You also get to practice in excellent facilities in the Quad Cities and several major hospitals and healthcare providers in the area, giving you a range of clinical placement options. Mayra Vasquez ‘19 completed her 160-hour preceptorship in the burn unit at the University of Iowa Hospital. Read about her experience.

We also seek opportunities to work with students in allied health professions such as physical therapy, occupational therapy, speech-language pathology, and physician assistant studies.

Our nursing program faculty have 300+ years of combined professional experience they want to share. And, they will challenge, encourage and support you. Read what some of our December 2018 graduates have to say about the program: Reina Gladon and Joo Hee Kim and Sangita Thapa.

Our BSN program is just one of the health science programs offered by the SAU College of Health and Human Services.

What is Early Decision Placement?

If you are a high-achieving high school student considering earning your BSN at St. Ambrose, why not secure your place in the program? You must meet specific criteria and there is a deadline for applications, but it's a great opportunity. Learn more and complete your application today.

If you don't qualify for Early Decision Placement, don't worry, there is still plenty of time. The majority of our students apply to the Nursing program their sophomore year after they have completed some general education requirements.

Get answers to other program questions on the Nursing Frequently Asked Questions page.

What are some potential career outcomes?

BSN graduates work in hospitals, nursing homes, outpatient clinics, mental health organizations, and public health departments. Careers include staff nursing, advanced practice nursing, home health nursing, travel nursing, private duty nursing, research, telehealth, nursing education, emergency relief, military nursing, forensic nursing, quality assurance, and case management.

SAU can help you launch your career through our robust Career Center. Each year, the Career Center hosts an annual health sciences career fair to help you find summer internships and jobs. And, there are resume, interview, and cover letter workshops throughout the year.

What have alumni of this program done?

Cam Alvarez '19, BSN, is an ER nurse at St. Francis Medical Center in Peoria, Illinois. Read this story about his Ambrosian education and experience. 

Reina Glandon '18, BSN, is a pediatric-specialized in-home care nurse, traveling to Eastern Iowa areas such as North Liberty, Coralville, and Iowa City.

Megan Van Hoorn '14, RN, BSN, works in Oak Lawn, Illinois, at the Advocate Children's Hospital.

Courtney Davis '06 MSN, RN, BSN is a faculty member at Georgia Gwinnett College in Lawrenceville, Georgia.

Adam Haut '08 was recognized by the College of Health and Human Services for his deep dedication to the nursing profession and to the university. Read this story.

Degree Requirements

Required:
BIOL 101 Principles of Biology
BIOL 211 Introductory Microbiology
BIOL 230 Human Anatomy and Physiology I
BIOL 232 Human Anatomy and Physiology II
CHEM 103 Principles of Chemistry
PHIL 310/THEO 319 Biomedical Ethics
PSYC 105 Introductory Psychology
PSYC 212 Life-Span Developmental Psychology
SOC 101 Introduction to Sociology
STAT 213 Applied Statistical Reasoning for the Sciences

Required Nursing Courses:
NURS 305 Introduction to Nursing Concepts 
NURS 315 Nursing Process I Across the Lifespan
NURS 325 Applied Health Assessment Across the Lifespan
NURS 335 Pathophysiology and Pharmacology
NURS 350 Applied Learning Experiences I
NURS 360 Introduction to Theoretical Concepts
NURS 365 Nursing Process II Across the Lifespan
NURS 370 Applied Learning Experiences II
NURS 375 Pathophysiology/Pharmacology
NURS 380 Nursing Concepts of Mental Health
NURS 395 Clinical Application II
NURS 410 Concepts of Population Health
NURS 415 Nursing Process III Across the Lifespan 
NURS 425 Applied Nursing Experiences III
NURS 435 Concepts of Children and Women's Health
NURS 440 Evidence-Based Practice
NURS 445 Clinical Application III
NURS 460 Concepts of Applied Nursing Care
NURS 465 Concepts of Chronicity
NURS 475 Leadership and Contemporary Issues 
NURS 485 Professional Nursing Capstone
NURS 495 Advanced Nursing Practicum


Click here to read Nursing course descriptions

Interested in a part-time option of the traditional program? Contact our advisor by phone at 563-333-6082 or send an email to nursing@sau.edu for more information.

Already have a non-nursing degree? You might be interested in our Accelerated BSN Program.

Plan to Graduate

This is the suggested plan of study to graduate in four years with a Bachelor of Science degree in Nursing.

This plan assumes the student has taken three years of foreign language in high school.

Year One

FallCREDITSSpringCREDITS
ENGL 101 English Composition 3 COMM Oral Comm 3
MATH 171 Elementary Functions 3 THEO/PHIL 100-200 level 3
PSYC 105 Intro to Psychology 3 SOC 101 Intro to Sociology 3
BIOL 101 Principles of Biology+Lab 4 CHEM 103 Principles of Chemistry+Lab 4
NSS 101 New Student Seminar 1 PHIL or THEO 3
IL 101 Information Literacy 1
KIN 149 Wellness Concepts 1
Total 16 16

Year Two

FallCREDITSSpringCREDITS
STAT 213 Statistics 3 PSYC 212 Life Span Development 3
BIOL 230 Human Anatomy & Physiology+Lab 4 BIOL 232 Advanced Human Anatomy & Physiology II+Lab 4
BIOL 211 Microbiology+Lab 4 Humanities Literature/Film 3
Creative Arts 3 PHIL or THEO 3
Humanities Elective Historical/Cultural 3 KIN Activity 1
CNA: Take at Community College PHIL 310 Biomedical Ethics/THEO Bioethics and Healthcare 3
Total 17 Total 17

Year Three

FallCREDITSSpringCREDITS
NURS 305 Introduction to Contemporary Nursing 3 NURS 360 Introduction to Theoretical Concepts 3
NURS 315 Nursing Process I Across the Lifespan 3 NURS 365 Nursing Process II Across the Lifespan 4
NURS 325 Applied Health Assessment Across the Lifespan 3 NURS 370 Applied Learning Experiences II 2
NURS 335 Pathophysiology/Pharmacology 4 NURS 375 Pathophysiology/Pharmacology II 3
NURS 350 Applied Learning Experiences I 2 NURS 380 Nursing Concepts of Mental Health 3
3 NURS 395 Clinical Application II              2
Total 15 Total 17

Year Four

FallCREDITSSpringCREDITS
NURS 410 Concepts of Population Health 3 NURS 460 Concepts of Applied Nursing Care 3
NURS 415 Nursing Process III Across the Lifespan 3 NURS 465 Concepts of Chronicity 3
NURS 425 Applied Learning Experiences III 2 NURS 475 Leadership & Contemporary Issues 3
NURS 435 Concepts of Children & Women's Health 3 WI-NURS 485 Professional Nursing Capstone 3
WI-NURS 440 Evidence-Based Practice 3 NURS 495 Advanced Nursing Practicum 3
NURS 445 Clinical Application III 2
Total 16 Total 15

WI=writing intensive

Faculty and Staff

Katie Browning, DNP, Asst. Professor and Ann E. Hinkhouse Endowed Chair

Kara Baker, Office Administrator
Kari Crowder, MSN, Clinical Instructor
Christina Cunningham, MSN, ARNP, RN
Katrina DeToye, DNP, Asst. Professor
Deb Frankie-Lasher, Advisor/Recruiter
Ann Garton, DNP, Assoc. Professor
Danielle Hoffman, DNP, Asst. Professor
Lynnette Kruse, Clinical Instructor
Amy McCormick, DNP, Asst. Professor
Juleann Miller, PhD, Professor
Erin Rennert, Lab and Office Assistant
Heather Scott, MSN, Clinical Assistant Instructor
Katie Sleaford, MSN, Clinical Instructor
Shelley Spector, DNP, Asst. Professor
Kurt Sturmer, DNP, Assoc. Professor

Scholarships and Grants

First-Year

St. Ambrose offers excellent scholarships and grants, work-study and other financial aid options! Full-time students may be eligible based upon your strong academic performance in college, your talent in fine arts or athletics or your demonstrated financial need as determined by the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). The SAU school code for the FAFSA is 001889.

First-Year Scholarships and Institutional Aid 2022-2023

There is no need to apply for the scholarships or grants below; students automatically are eligible if they meet specific criteria. The Admissions Office calculates the award amount by using unweighted high school GPA and ACT/SAT scores. Please note, while St. Ambrose University has a test-optional admissions policy, standardized test scores are required for both admission to specific programs and/or eligibility for top academic scholarships. Scholarships and grants are renewable for four years of undergraduate study. 

Your scholarship will automatically renew each year of your undergraduate studies - up to four years - as long as you maintain satisfactory progress toward an undergraduate degree, achieve certain GPA requirements (see below), and remain a full-time student. 

Download helpful PDFs of this information here: First-Year Iowa Resident or First-Year Out of State Resident


IOWA RESIDENTS LIVING ON CAMPUS

Iowa Resident On Campus Merit-Based Scholarships

Trustee Scholar
Criteria: unweighted 3.9 GPA and minimum 29 ACT or 1340 SAT score. Must maintain 3.25 cumulative GPA in successive years.
Award: $25,000/year and invited to compete for an Ambrose Scholar full-tuition award

Academic Scholarships
Criteria: based on unweighted GPA and ACT/SAT score (optional)
Award: $15,000-$21,000/year

University Grant
Criteria: based on unweighted GPA and ACT/SAT score (optional)
Award: $13,000/year

Iowa Resident On Campus Additional Institutional Aid

Ambrose Advantage
Criteria: Iowa resident, Federal Pell Grant eligible, 2022 high school graduate, min. unweighted GPA 2.5, admitted to SAU, and FAFSA filed by Mar. 15. To remain eligible in subsequent years, students must maintain 2.5 GPA and qualify for the Federal Pell Grant.
Award: Full tuition

Athletic Scholarships
Criteria: performance and ability
Award: varies

Fine Arts Scholarships
Criteria: performance and ability in music, art and theatre
Award: varies

Fr. Welch Alumni Scholarships
Criteria: parent is a St. Ambrose graduate
Award: $1,000/year

Minority Scholarship
Criteria: ethnically diverse student, FAFSA required
Award: $500-$1,000/year

Catholic Traditions Scholarship
Criteria: graduate from Catholic high school
Award: $2,000/year

Menke Parish Scholarship
Criteria: Diocese of Davenport parishioner, additional application required
Award: $1,000/year



IOWA RESIDENTS LIVING OFF CAMPUS

Iowa Resident Off Campus Merit-Based Scholarships

Academic Scholarships
Criteria: based on unweighted GPA and ACT/SAT score (optional)
Award: $13,000-$16,000/year

University Grants
Criteria: based on unweighted GPA and ACT/SAT score
Award: $11,000/year

Iowa Resident Off Campus Additional Institutional Scholarships

Ambrose Advantage
Criteria: Iowa resident, Federal Pell Grant eligible, 2022 high school graduate, min. unweighted GPA 2.5, admitted to SAU, and FAFSA filed by Mar. 15. To remain eligible in subsequent years, students must maintain 2.5 GPA and qualify for the Federal Pell Grant.
Award: Full tuition

Athletic Scholarships
Criteria: performance and ability
Award: varies

Fine Arts Scholarships
Criteria: performance and ability in music, art and theatre
Award: varies

Fr. Welch Alumni Scholarships
Criteria: parent is a St. Ambrose graduate
Award: $500/year

Minority Scholarship
Criteria: ethnically diverse student, FAFSA required
Award: $500-$1,000/year

Catholic Traditions Scholarship
Criteria: graduate from Catholic high school
Award: $2,000/year



OUT OF STATE RESIDENTS LIVING ON CAMPUS

Out of State On Campus Merit-Based Scholarships

Trustee Scholar
Criteria: unweighted 3.9 GPA and minimum 29 ACT or 1340 SAT score. Must maintain 3.25 cumulative GPA in successive years.
Award: $25,000/year and invited to compete for an Ambrose Scholar full-tuition award

Academic Scholarships
Criteria: based on unweighted GPA and ACT/SAT score (optional)
Award: $17,000-$23,000/year

University Grant
Criteria: based on unweighted GPA and ACT/SAT score (optional)
Award: $13,000/year

Out of State On Campus Additional Institutional Aid

Athletic Scholarships
Critieria: performance and ability
Award: varies

Fine Arts Scholarships
Critieria: performance and ability in music, art and theatre
Award: varies

Fr. Welch Alumni Scholarships
Criteria: parent is a St. Ambrose graduate
Award: $1,000/year

Minority Scholarship
Criteria: ethnically diverse student, FAFSA required
Award: $500-$1,000/year

Catholic Traditions Scholarship
Criteria: graduate from Catholic high school
Award: $2,000/year

Menke Parish Scholarship
Criteria: Diocese of Davenport parishioner, additional application required
Award: $1,000/year



OUT OF STATE RESIDENTS LIVING OFF CAMPUS

Out of State Off Campus Merit-Based Scholarships

Academic Scholarships
Criteria: based on unweighted GPA and ACT/SAT score (optional)
Award: $14,000-$17,000/year

University Grants
Criteria: based on unweighted GPA and ACT/SAT score
Award: $11,000/year

Out of State Off Campus Additional Institutional Scholarships

Athletic Scholarships
Criteria: performance and ability
Award: varies

Fine Arts Scholarships
Criteria: performance and ability in music, art and theatre
Award: varies

Fr. Welch Alumni Scholarships
Criteria: parent is a St. Ambrose graduate
Award: $500/year

Minority Scholarship
Criteria: ethnically diverse student, FAFSA required
Award: $500/year

Catholic Traditions Scholarship
Criteria: graduate from Catholic high school
Award: $2,000/year

State and Federal Grants, Work Study

Grants are money that you don't repay, and they can come from government or private sources. SAU receives all financial aid funds directly - including loans and grants - then applies them to your account: once in the fall term and once in the spring term. Grants can be used to cover your tuition, books, and housing costs. You must apply for grants each academic year. If you have any loan funds in excess of your costs, you may receive a refund. If you are a first-time borrower, there is a 30-day hold on your first disbursement. For all of these grants, you must complete the Free Application Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) as soon as possible after October 1.


Iowa Tuition Grant
To be eligible for the Iowa Tuition Grant, you must be a resident of Iowa as defined by the State Board of Regents and currently enrolled or planning to enroll in an undergraduate degree program at an eligible Iowa college or university (SAU is eligible). Iowa College Aid administers need-based college financial aid for Iowans, such as the Iowa Tuition Grant. FAFSA deadline is July 1.
Award: $6,800

Federal Pell Grant
Awarded to students of the highest need based on how much your family can contribute to your education. The U.S. Department of Education sets a Expected Family Contribution (EFC) threshold. Then, when you file your Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA), it computes where you land within that threshold and determines if you qualify for the grant and for how much.
Award: $6,345 maximum

Federal Supplemental Education Opportunity Grant (FSEOG)
To qualify, you must file a FAFSA by the priority deadline of March 15 and you must qualify for a Pell Grant. This grant is awarded on a first-come, first-served basis to students who have submitted all required documents for review and in time for the review to be complete. If you are eligible for a Pell Grant or SEOG, the awards will appear on your financial aid award letter. Award: $400 maximum

Federal Work Study
Criteria: based on financial need. File FAFSA as soon as possible after Oct. 1.
Award: $1,850

Federal Teacher Education Assistance for College and Higher Education (TEACH) Grant 
Provides aid to students intending to teach in a high-need field at a school that serves low-income families (as determined by the U.S. Department of Education or a state education agency). Review criteria and all details here.
Award: up to $4,000

Outside Scholarships

There are many opportunities to receive scholarships from outside sources, here are a few websites to begin researching your options:

Another tip: Next time you're on campus, check out the bulletin board outside Bee Central where we post more flyers and applications for outside scholarships.


Brandy Jurevitz ’19 BSN


Brandy knows a good nurse focuses on the patient, and the family, too. She gained that perspective during several volunteer positions and a preceptorship at the University of Iowa Stead Family Children's Hospital, where she now works as a general pediatric nurse. "Those experiences made me a better nurse. I not only take care of patients, but I also see how it is impacting the whole family and I try to take care of them as well," Brandy said. Going beyond was a value reflected in her SAU education. "I love the nursing program at SAU. Education is on a personal level and every professor makes you feel special and important, that you are smart and will be an amazing nurse.”

Read Brandy's Story
Marceline Kougbani-Sebou Mobile Cutout Marceline Kougbani-Sebou Headshot

Marceline Kougbani-Sebou, MSN, FNP-BC

Bachelor of Science in Nursing,Class of 2016


Marceline is committed to serving, and we are, too. Our nursing program taught her to provide a higher level of care, and the spark to go a step beyond. We provide a holistic education that empowers you to achieve your goals, so you can support patients in achieving their goals, too. Personal care and compassion. It's what we, and Marceline, provide in health care.

See My Story

So, what's next?

Are you ready to take the next step? Click on the visit button below to learn more about our virtual and in-person visit options.