TWU’s School of Nursing earns accreditation from national body

Following a thorough review process, Trinity Western University’s School of Nursing has had its accreditation renewed by the Canadian Association of Schools of Nursing (CASN), the official accrediting agency for university nursing programs in Canada.

“Having this accreditation is a sign of excellence,” said School of Nursing Dean Sonya Grypma, Ph.D. “It provides national and international recognition.”

The renewal process began nearly two years ago, with the School of Nursing’s submission of extensive reports on its curriculum and program, among other things. Last fall, CASN sent three of its most experienced site reviewers to the Langley campus for a week to verify the TWU report, and to ask additional questions. The reviewers sat in on both nursing and non-nursing classes; met with groups of students, staff, faculty, and alumni; observed nursing labs; and went to the hospitals to observe students. “They turned over every stone in the process,” Grypma said.

Although site reviewers don’t decide on accreditation (that decision was made by CASN in February) at the end of their visit, the reviewers provided a verbal report of their findings to the School. “The review team said our submission was so positive they thought we might be exaggerating,” said Grypma. “But after spending a week here, they said, ‘Okay, you weren’t exaggerating. It really is that good.’”

At a time when Trinity Western has been in the news for reasons other than academic, Grypma said, “for those who may be curious about what Trinity is all about, this accreditation is a real affirmation that we are a place of academic excellence, that what we’re doing as a school, we’re doing really well.”

TWU’s nursing program launched nearly 22 years ago, after the Registered Nurses Association of BC (now the College of Registered Nurses of British Columbia), asked the University to establish a program because, at the time, there was only one university in the Province that granted nursing degrees.

The then-Department of Nursing became the School of Nursing in 2009, and continues to educate highly skilled nursing graduates who are in high demand when they complete their degrees. The School also offers a Master of Science in Nursing program for those nurses wanting to further their education and career opportunities.

“There are lots of things that are unique about Trinity Western,” said Grypma, “but one of the things the reviewers picked up on was how we, a professional school, don’t act as a separate department doing our own thing. One of the incredible strengths of this University, and our program within it, is that TWU’s entire faculty and staff stand shoulder to shoulder, facing the same direction.

“We all want to see our students succeed,” Grypma said. “Our whole campus knows our program, knows our students. And our alumni and donors have the same love for this place, and are as committed to our students as we are.”

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