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UTRGV nursing program fully accredited by national agency

November 8, 2016 GMT

EDINBURG — Another accreditation agency has granted the University of Texas Rio Grande Valley’s nursing program full accreditation in yet another step in the transition from the university’s legacy institutions.

The Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education granted the program full accreditation for the next five years as part of a voluntary, self-regulatory process that involves having the programs go through peer-reviews, according to a news release.

“I think it gives us a level of parity with other programs in the United States that are also nationally accredited,” said Carolina Huerta, director of the UTRGV School of Nursing in the release. “It shows to the community, to whoever is interested in our programs, that we have certain standards that we meet that are above and beyond those set forth by the state board of nursing.”

The agency accredits baccalaureate, graduate and residency nursing programs nationwide with the purpose of identifying effective programs, according to CCNE’s website. And even though it’s voluntary, the accreditation is recognized by the U.S. Secretary of Education, the release states.

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The nursing program at UT-Pan American had been accredited by CCNE since 1998, but had to reapply as part of UTRGV. The program had also received full accreditation by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools as part of the university-wide accreditation process.

Because the maximum accreditation period is five years, the university will have to renew the accreditation in December 2017 by submitting a compliance report. But the effective date of the accreditation was granted as of December 2015, when UTRGV had its first graduating class.

“This accreditation indicates to the university and to the community that our School of Nursing has goals, a mission and a vision that are congruent with the university, and that we are in step with what the university is all about,” Huerta said.

dperez-hernandez@themonitor.com