Skip to Content (Press Enter)

Foundation Awards $149,000 in Grants to SAU Nursing Program

Blue & You Foundation logoThe Southern Arkansas University (SAU) Department of Nursing has made great strides in the past year due in part to three grants awarded by the Blue & You Foundation for a Healthier Arkansas.

The grants, totaling $149,000, enhanced the SAU Nursing Science and Simulation Center and provided software to prepare their students for the nursing licensure exam.

Two of the grants for the center enabled SAU to add an automated medication dispensing system, iPads for every student and faculty/staff member, and faculty training on mental health issues.

“It has put the program on the front lines in responding to medication safety issues, prescription drug abuse and other medical addiction issues,” said Dr. Karen Landry, SAU Department of Nursing chair.

“We are so proud of our students,” Landry said. “They have the commitment necessary to successfully complete this program.

“We are preparing these students for one of the most challenging and versatile careers available today. Family members entrust their loved ones to our care and patient safety is our highest priority,” she said. “We are an essential member of any healthcare team and we take our responsibilities very seriously at SAU.”

SAU nursing graduates rank first in NCLEX pass rate

SAU also recently announced that the 2020 graduates of its Bachelor of Science in Nursing Program ranked first among state-supported four-year universities in Arkansas for first-time NCLEX (National Council Licensure Examination) pass rate, as reported by the State Board of Nursing. For the 2020 year, which runs from July 1, 2019, to June 30, 2020, SAU nursing graduates achieved a 97.3 percent pass rate on their first attempt.

“It’s gratifying to know that our three recent grants to SAU – two for their simulation teaching center and one for software to prepare their students for the nursing licensure exam – helped produce the highest first-time pass rate among nursing students in Arkansas,” said Patrick O’Sullivan, executive director of the Blue & You Foundation.

“We congratulate SAU on this achievement and are proud to help fund the superior education of our nurses of tomorrow.”

Photograph courtesy of the Southern Arkansas University (SAU). Mary Armwood, assistant professor nursing, assists SAU students with procedures in the Wharton Nursing Building.

The Blue & You Foundation is a charitable foundation established and funded by Arkansas Blue Cross and Blue Shield to promote better health in Arkansas. The Foundation is an independent licensee of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association and serves the state of Arkansas. It is a 501(c)(3) organization.

Share this story