nursing students working in simulation lab
Nov 29, 2016 | Carolyn Query

Perhaps you have always known you wanted to become a nurse or you are hoping to make a career change. An Associates to Bachelor’s (ATB) program is a great option for anyone who is starting on the path to become a nurse.  

An ATB program is a concurrent enrollment program with a community college and university. Stevenson University currently is partnered and participating in ATB programs in nursing with the Community College of Baltimore County (CCBC), Carroll Community College (CCC), and Howard Community College (HCC). Students must apply and be accepted into the nursing program at a partner school in order to be eligible. Students will work towards their associate degree and bachelor’s degree simultaneously; the program takes approximately three years to complete.

With the push for 80 percent of nurses to hold bachelor’s degree by 2020, this is a great opportunity for students to increase their marketability upon graduation and meet the new minimum education requirement.

As a student in the program, the majority of your coursework will be completed with the community college; however, you are required to complete 30 credits at Stevenson. We take pride in the affordability of our programs as well. ATB students save money by completing a portion of their degree at a community college and also receive a discounted rate at Stevenson because of the partnership.

Course Format

Stevenson’s ATB courses are offered in a blended format. The first Stevenson course of the program will meet onsite weekly; this allows students to meet their cohort classmates and adjust to the academic expectations of the University. After completion of the introductory course, the program will progress to hybrid format, meeting only once every other week. Eventually the program will be entirely online.

CCBC offers the ATB program at the Essex and Catonsville campuses. CCBC-Essex offers evening and weekend options for classes while CCBC-Catonsville offers daytime and online courses. Students who wish to enroll the in evening and weekend program can only begin the program in the Fall, while the daytime and online programs can begin in either the Fall or Spring. CCC program is completed on campus and offers only one start date in the Fall.

The Stevenson Way

Each ATB student works closely with a Student Success Coach who will serve has his or her advisor, advocate, and cheerleader. Your Student Success Coach will be there to support you throughout the duration of the program by creating an individual degree plan. By creating this plan, you will know what the program expects and when each course will be completed. While all the nursing courses must be completed in sequence, there is some flexibility in completing non-nursing, general education courses. 

Finding the Right Fit

To determine if ATB is the right fit, it is important to consider the time investment associated with the program. Nursing programs are demanding; in the ATB program, you will be enrolled in two of them! Some students may work while enrolled to help pay for school. If this is the case for you, consider working part-time to ensure your workload is manageable. Also take into account other responsibilities you may have as you prepare to enroll in the course of study.

The Associate's to Bachelor's program is a great option, but definitely not for everyone. If you still want to become a nurse but do not feel ATB is the right option, you can enroll in the nursing program at one of our partner schools to earn your associate's degree then transfer to a four-year institution, such as Stevenson, to pursue the RN to BS program or enroll in the traditional nursing program at Stevenson

To learn more about our ATB program, please contact us at karichards@stevenson.edu or 1-877-531-7118.

Healthcare