Hard Work Pays Off for RVC Nursing Grads

The Rock Valley College Nursing program class of 2023 has more to celebrate than graduation this year. The class of 2023 has earned a 100% pass rate on the registered nurse licensure exam, NCLEX-RN.

“This is a testament to not only how hard our students work to prepare for this exam but also how hard our nursing faculty work to prepare our students,” said Dean of Nursing and Allied Health Ellen Njolstad-Oksnevad. “The NCLEX changed significantly this year. Many of us in nursing education have been anxious about those changes for the “Next Gen” NCLEX.”

The NCLEX-RN exam is used by all state boards of nursing across the United States and Canada to assess a student’s competency in order to gain employment as a safe, practicing nurse. All state boards of nursing use NCLEX-RN pass rates as a way to approve a school’s ability to provide nursing education.

RVC’s Nursing program is a selective admissions program where students must meet minimum requirements for entry, and students compete for limited program seats available with new cohorts starting each fall and spring. The program consists of a four-semester course including classroom, skills lab, and clinical experiences.

All students who successfully complete the RVC Nursing program earn an Associate in Applied Science (AAS) degree and are eligible to sit for the NCLEX-RN to earn the Registered Nurse (RN) credential. All of our graduates are employable at all three local hospitals in Rockford, as well as other healthcare agencies. Once hired in, RVC graduates are often expected and encouraged to complete their Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN). To help facilitate an easy transition into an RN-BSN Completion Program, RVC Nursing has developed partnerships with several RN-BSN Completion Programs, including Indiana-Wesleyan University, Northern Illinois University, St. Anthony College of Nursing, Olivet-Nazarene University, and the University of Illinois in Chicago.

In 2022, the national average pass rate for the NCLEX-RN was 80% with the Illinois average being 77%. Last year, the pass rate for RVC nursing graduates was 86%. Therefore, the RVC nursing program increased its pass rate by 14% for 2023.

“In my years as Dean, there has never been a 100% pass rate for the year. In fact, if you look back, as far as 2001, RVC has not had a 100% pass rate.” continued Ellen. “The success of our nursing students is a tribute to the quality of the program, nursing faculty, and the invaluable partnerships with local hospital and health systems partners.”

For more information about RVC’s exceptional nursing program, visit www.rockvalleycollege.edu/academics/programs/nursing.