sealPurdue News

February 14, 2003

New nursing, business degrees initiated by Purdue trustees

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. - The Purdue University Board of Trustees today (Friday, 2/14) approved two new degrees advanced practice nursing at West Lafayette and a bachelor of arts in business at Calumet.

"The adult nurse practitioner master of science degree responds to the state's and nation's demand for nurse practitioners as health care begins to rely on these professionals," said Provost Sally Frost Mason. "The new bachelor of arts degree in business is designed to meet the needs of the changing economic base in northwestern Indiana. It will focus on marketing, customer service and people management skills."

A nurse practitioner (NP) completes a two-year program of advanced didactic and clinical education beyond the baccalaureate nursing degree. The nurse practitioner has greater responsibilities than a registered nurse, including complex clinical decision-making and health promotion. The nurse practitioner also can coordinate the care of individuals with common acute and chronic conditions and write prescriptions.

The Purdue advanced nurse practitioner master's program is the first in Indiana to place its main emphasis on rural health care for underserved populations. It is the third program in the state to specialize in adult care.

"The number of advanced practice nurses should be doubled to meet the needs of underserved populations, particularly in rural areas," said Julie Novak, associate head of the School of Nursing who will provide administrative and academic oversight. "Purdue's program will begin to meet that need in the state with nurse practitioner students who will gain clinical experience in a Health Professional Shortage Area (HPSA) with a medically underserved rural population during at least one of their three clinical rotations."

Howard Cohen, chancellor at Purdue University Calumet, said the bachelor of arts degree in business focuses on providing students with a general understanding of business rather than concentrating on a specialized discipline or application.

"This program will accommodate students who are not interested in pursuing the more traditional program, such as accounting, a professional specialization," Cohen said. "The new degree also will benefit students pursuing a double major or students who transfer from the Indiana Community College system or other junior colleges."

Both degrees will be submitted to the Commission for Higher Education for final action.

Writer: Amy Patterson-Neubert, (765) 494-9723,

Sources:   Sally Frost Mason, (765) 494-9709,
Julie Novak,   (765) 494-4029,
Wesley Lukoshus, assistant vice chancellor for advancement at Purdue University Calumet, (219) 989-2217,

Purdue News Service: (765) 494-2096;

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