ABINGTON, Pa. — Penn State Abington announced a partnership last week with Montgomery County Community College (MCCC) that allows MCCC students and county residents to earn a bachelor of science degree in nursing from the Penn State College of Nursing with the convenience of taking courses at MCCC.
Beginning in fall 2017, Abington faculty will teach courses in the registered nurse to bachelor of science in nursing (RN to BSN) program on MCCC’s Central Campus in Blue Bell, about 30 minutes from Abington. It is open to any diploma or associate degree graduate with an RN license and a minimum 2.0 grade-point average from their nursing education.
Student Elyssa Pizza, a single mom to two young boys, always wanted to attend a four-year university.
"This is making my dreams come true. I can go to school in Montgomery County, and say I have degrees from MCCC and Penn State," she said. "That's major for somebody like me. I wouldn't otherwise have this opportunity."
"This is making my dreams come true. I can go to school in Montgomery County, and say I have degrees from MCCC and Penn State. That's major for somebody like me. I wouldn't otherwise have this opportunity."
— Elyssa Pizza, RN to BSN student
Damian J. Fernandez, chancellor of Penn State Abington, told the audience at an event marking the partnership that the two schools share aspirations for their students.
“As institutions of higher learning, Penn State Abington and Montgomery County Community College share a commitment to offering affordable, accessible, and high-impact education,” Fernandez said. “This partnership is vital to advancing educational and employment opportunities to residents of the region.”
Kevin Pollock, president of MCCC, said such partnerships are important to the future of higher education.
“We look forward to working with Penn State to continue to provide residents of Montgomery County and surrounding areas with quality, innovative opportunities to pursue their educational goals,” he said.
Brenda Holtzer, assistant professor of nursing and coordinator of the RN to BSN degree program at Abington, said MCCC students with associate’s degrees can complete their bachelor’s degrees in three semesters.
“It’s a seamless transition to the BSN,” she said.
Abington is offering financial support to eligible nurses enrolled in the RN to BSN program, with scholarships ranging from $1,500 to $2,500.
Abington students taking courses at MCCC will have access to MCCC services including the library, parking, technology access and career advising.
Penn State Abington, formerly the Ogontz campus, offers baccalaureate degrees in 18 majors at its suburban location just north of Philadelphia. Nearly half of our 4,000 students complete all four years at Abington, with opportunities in undergraduate research, the Schreyer honors program, NCAA Division III athletics, and more. Students can start the first two years of more than 160 Penn State majors at Abington and complete their degrees at University Park or another campus. Lions Gate, our first residence hall, will open in August.