• Believe It: Students have a 93% first-time pass rate on the Nursing State Board Exam (NCLEX-RN) 2013.

    • Licensure exam (NCLEX-RN) pass rates have averaged 93.5 percent over the last five years.
    • Graduates of Gannon's nursing program enjoy a nearly 100 percent placement rate within months of graduation.
    • The Villa Maria School of Nursing was one of the first generic baccalaureate programs in Pennsylvania, admitting its first students in 1952.
    • Gannon's nursing programs have held approval from the Pennsylvania State Board of Nursing since 1953, and have maintained consistent accreditation since 1965.
    • The baccalaureate degree in nursing, master's degree in nursing and post-graduate APRN certificate at Gannon University are accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (www.aacn.

    You Will Learn

    Gannon University's Villa Maria School of Nursing baccalaureate program is a community-based curriculum, providing students opportunities to offer holistic nursing care to individuals, families, groups, communities and populations. Students benefit from a small student-to- faculty ratio in the clinical setting with nursing faculty who specialize in the area they teach. Hands-on experience in the role of the professional nurse begins at the sophomore level. A total of 980 hours of hands-on experience are gained in the program. Students and faculty in the Villa Maria School of Nursing are involved in more than 3,000 service-learning hours per year.

    Gannon also offers an online RN to BSN completion option, and an RN to MSN program leading to a Masters in Nursing as a Family Nurse Practitioner, Nurse Anesthetist, or in Nursing Administration,. An on-line Doctor of Nursing Practice post-master's degree is available. A post-bachelor's (BSN) certificate in school nursing is also available online.

    You Will Experience

    Between the student's junior and senior years, summer internships are available in Erie's state-of-the-art medical centers and hospitals. Students can also apply to health centers close to home in preparation for their first position after graduation. Internship areas of interest include medical surgical floors, psychiatric mental health facilities, intensive care units, oncology units and mother/baby centers.

    You Will Achieve

    The employment opportunities for registered nurses (RNs) are excellent, as a continued shortage of RNs is projected through 2025. Salaries in the industry vary depending on the location and type of organization.

    You will Study

    Clinical experiences are an integral part of the nursing curriculum. The Villa Maria School of Nursing has affiliation agreements with more than 50 health care agencies in northwestern Pennsylvania. Students complete 980 hours of clinical experience before graduation

    Students have access to the Interdisciplinary Patient Simulation Center in the Morosky Academic Center from the first semester sophomore year

    Senior students complete a 224 hour precepted practicum in the area of nursing of their choice. This includes areas such as ICU, Mother/Baby, Psychiatric Mental health, Wound Care, and Medical Surgical nursing.

    All Gannon nursing students participate in health promotion, risk reduction and health maintenance activities at the Nursing Center, which is located in the John E. Horan Garden Apartments. The Nursing Center is supported by the Housing Authority of the City of Erie and Gannon University.

    All Gannon nursing students have the opportunity to participate in the national fraternity for professional nurses, Alpha Tau Delta, which has a chapter at Gannon University.

    Students may be eligible for induction to The Honor Society of Nursing, Sigma Theta Tau International. The Eta Xi Chapter of Sigma Theta Tau International is located at Gannon University's Villa Maria School of Nursing.

    Nursing students wishing to pursue a career in Army nursing may participate in Gannon's ROTC through the Partnership in Nursing Education (PNE) program.

    Liberal Studies Core

    The Liberal Studies Core Curriculum is one reflection of Gannon University's commitment to its Catholic identity. The Core's design offers students a defined, integrated, shared experience as the foundation for their undergraduate program.

    You Will Earn

    The employment opportunities for registered nurses (RNs) are excellent, as a continued shortage of RNs is projected through 2025. Salaries in the industry vary depending on the location and type of organization.

    • Starting salary: $55,400
    • Mid-career salary: $71,700

    All salary information is compiled from data gathered from the Bureau of Labor Statistics ( and/or PayScale (