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Saint Xavier University’s School of Nursing designated Center of Excellence

National League for Nursing awards three-year designation

Chicago (Sept. 28, 2007) – Saint Xavier University’s School of Nursing has been recognized as a Center of Excellence in Nursing Education by the National League for Nursing.  

At a ceremony in Phoenix, Ariz., this morning, the NLN announced that Saint Xavier will carry the designation for the next three years. During that time, Saint Xavier will be available to other schools seeking to move their own programs toward distinction.

“This is a tremendous honor for the Saint Xavier School of Nursing,” said interim dean Kay Thurn. “The School itself is an intensely values-driven environment at all levels of discourse, decision making and action. This designation is further evidence of the faculty’s outstanding innovation, flexibility and commitment to nursing education. These superb teachers demonstrate extraordinary commitment to the future of nursing education. Our graduates are confident, compassionate, curious, flexible and wise nursing professionals. ”  

Recognition as a Center of Excellence is designed to distinguish schools that show innovation in all programs, conduct ongoing research to document the effectiveness of such innovation, set high standards for themselves, and are committed to continuous quality improvement. 

The NLN chose Saint Xavier as a Center of Excellence for “creating an environment that enhances student learning and professional development.” Strengths noted during the application process include the school’s history of strategic planning and its Sisters of Mercy heritage. In 1935, Saint Xavier and the Mercy Hospital Training School of Mercy Hospital joined forces to create the first integrated baccalaureate nursing program in Illinois. The school has grown from four graduates in June 1939 to 120 for the 2006-2007 academic year.

Grounded in the Mercy tradition and experience in nursing education, the school links innovation and concern for community to provide baccalaureate degrees in nursing (BSN) to pre-licensure, licensed practical nurse and registered nurse students. 

The undergraduate nursing curriculum is founded on a strong liberal arts and sciences orientation, with a focus on caring and developing leadership and management abilities. It graduates the highest percentage of African-American and Hispanic nurses of any school of nursing in Illinois. 

The graduate program was one of the first in the nation to offer the Clinical Nurse Leader (CNL) track. Other options in the graduate program include the Family Nurse Practitioner (FNP) track, an MSN-MBA option, post-master’s certificates in FNP and Nurse Educator, and a unique opportunity to transition from the MSN to Rush University’s Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) program. 

Saint Xavier’s School of Nursing promotes a “culture of intentional caring” that is based on a collective vision of a supportive, trusting and collegial environment that supports student learning and professional development. The school provides unique, evidence-based initiatives that support undergraduate student learning and professional development.

More information about the Saint Xavier School of Nursing can be found at http://www.sxu.edu/son/default.asp.

The mission of the National League for Nursing is to promote excellence in nursing education to build a strong and diverse nursing workforce. NLN members include nurse educators, education agencies, healthcare agencies, and interested members of the public. The NLN offers faculty development programs, networking opportunities, testing and assessment, nursing research grants, and public policy initiatives to its 23,000 individual and 1,100 institutional members.

More information about the Center for Excellence designation can be found at http://www.nln.org/excellence/index.htm.  

Contact Joe Moore
773-298-3937 or jmoore@sxu.edu


Founded by the Sisters of Mercy in 1846, Saint Xavier University was the first Mercy college in the United States and is Chicago’s oldest Catholic university. Serving approximately 5,700 students at its campuses in Chicago, Orland Park and its Loop location, the University offers 35 undergraduate majors; more than 40 graduate program options in arts and sciences, business, education and nursing; and a variety of program options in continuing and professional studies. Recognizing Saint Xavier’s excellence in education, U.S. News and World Report has ranked SXU consistently among the Best Colleges in the Midwest.