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Frequently Asked Questions

Two students work on a dissection during a nursing course at Carthage College.

How many applications do you receive per year for the program?
We receive between 400 and 500 applications per year.

How many students do you admit to the program per year?
We aim to admit a cohort of 60-70 students each year. 

Can I double major if I’m in the nursing program?
No, it is not advisable to double major unless you intend to spend five years at Carthage.

Can I minor if I’m a nursing major?
It depends on your desired minor. Please contact your academic advisor as early as possible to see if this is possible.

Can I play a competitive sport if I’m a nursing major?
It is possible for some students, depending on the sport, to participate in athletics as a nursing major throughout all four years. However, students should be aware that the degree of difficulty in managing both the sport and the major becomes greater as students progress through the nursing program and begin their clinical rotations. It is also important for nursing majors to remember that they must maintain a cumulative GPA of 2.75 or better to progress through and graduate from the nursing program. They cannot receive lower than a C in any course. C- is not acceptable for any course taken by a nursing major.

The policy of the Nursing Department, found in the Department’s Student Handbook, is to support students in their extracurricular activities and to work with athletes for reasonable requests to be absent from planned learning experiences. However, given the faculty’s responsibility for preparing competent and safe clinicians, attendance during lecture, lab, and clinical experiences is mandatory. Missing classes, laboratory time, simulation time, or clinical experiences, if persistent and frequent, is not acceptable behavior and would jeopardize a student’s ability to be successful in the program.

It is up to the individual student to be able to determine if they can handle both the nursing major requirements and athletics. Each student’s case is evaluated on an individual basis and will depend on how well the student can organize and manage their time, and ensure they are meeting the attendance requirements for class, lab, and clinical. For example, softball and baseball are probably the most difficult sports to engage in as a nursing major, as softball and baseball athletes are often playing double headers all spring due to weather and may need to be out for games eight hours a day for three days a week. That would interfere significantly with the class and clinical requirements for a nursing student and would likely result in an inability to meet course or clinical objectives.

Athletes are expected to follow the policy as stated in the handbook. It is important that students keep in frequent communication with their nursing faculty, academic advisors, and coaches while engaged in their sport to ensure they are meeting requirements for the major and the sport.

Are there additional fees for the nursing program beyond tuition, room, and board?
Yes. Beginning in the sophomore year, students pay approximately $1,000 per year to cover costs of learning materials, background checks, uniforms, and equipment.

Is there study abroad in the nursing program?
Yes. Students may elect to participate in Carthage’s study tour to Nicaragua during the summer between their junior and senior years. This study tour is focused on health care and provides experience in a health care clinic. Students are also free to take any other J-term study tour abroad, as it fits into their schedule.

Is the program accredited?
The Carthage College Nursing Department is accredited to offer the Bachelor of Science in Nursing through the Higher Learning Commission (HLC), and has permission from the Wisconsin Board of Nursing to admit students. Final approval will come from the Wisconsin Board of Nursing once the first cohort of nursing students graduate from the program and take the licensing examination.

In addition, nursing programs seek accreditation from external agencies to demonstrate the quality of their programs. The baccalaureate degree program in nursing at Carthage College is pursuing initial accreditation by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education. Applying for accreditation does not guarantee that accreditation will be granted. CCNE’s accreditation team visit is scheduled for Feb. 28-March 2, 2018.

Where do students get their clinical experiences in the program?
We have partnerships with United Hospitals, Aurora and Aurora Behavioral Health in Kenosha, the Kenosha County Health Department, Visiting Nurses Association of Kenosha, Hospice Alliance, and Milwaukee Veterans Administration, as well as several long-term care and rehabilitation facilities. Most clinical sites are within a 30-mile radius of Carthage. Students are responsible for their own transportation to clinical sites.

Does the program use simulation?
Yes. Simulation (both high-fidelity mannequins and standardized patients) are utilized in the program and are guided by National League of Nursing standards for best practices in simulation research. The Nursing Learning Laboratories, which include the Simulation Lab and Skills Lab, are located in Lentz Hall.
Learn more about the Nursing Learning Laboratories 

Who will be teaching in the program?
The Nursing Department faculty are highly qualified and the majority hold doctoral degrees in nursing. They all have significant clinical and leadership experiences that provide for a rich background to inform their teaching. Our faculty view students as junior colleagues and are committed to our students’ success in college and in the profession.

  • Quick Facts

    • Carthage is named a Best Midwestern College by The Princeton Review (2018), a designation given to only 25 percent of four-year schools.

    • Scheduled to open in fall 2018, a new residential tower will offer suite-style housing and two floors of shared campus spaces for gaming, cooking, group meetings, or quiet studying. Learn more about The Tower

    • You’re going to need brain fuel. Grab a morning coffee and a snack and Starbucks or Einstein Bros. Bagels. Later, meet friends at “The Caf,” where the specials change daily but the staples are constant, or swing through “The Stu” for wings, a burrito, or a sub. A new option, Carthage Cash, even covers some off-campus meals.

    • Two years in, the Bachelor of Science in Nursing is one of Carthage’s fastest growing programs.

    • 96% of Carthage alumni report that they have secured a job or are continuing their studies six months after graduation. Visit Career Services.

    • 91% of employers say critical thinking, communication, and problem-solving skills matter more than your major when it comes to career success. Learn more about how the liberal arts prepare you for a successful career.

    • Lots of schools wear the four-year label. Carthage stands behind it. 95% of Carthage graduates earn their degrees in four years. Learn more

    • Oscars. Emmys. Tonys. Golden Globes. The playwrights we’ve brought in have them. Each year, the Carthage Theatre Department commissions an original script by a renowned playwright for its New Play Initiative. Carthage students then work with the writer to stage it. 

    • As a freshman in the highly selective Honors Program, learn how to gain expertise in anything from music to forest ecology. After that, tackle a contemporary social, economic, or political problem. If you like, you can live on an Honors-only floor of a Carthage residence hall. 

    • Every January and June, between 20 and 40 students travel to the island of Ometepe, Nicaragua, where they spend two weeks studying tropical ecology, volunteering in rural medical clinics, and helping to construct freshwater facilities. 

    • The Carthage nursing curriculum delivers nearly 1,100 hours of clinical experience by the time a student graduates from the program. Carthage partners with regional health facilities including the United Hospital System and Aurora Health Care. 

    • In 2016, 2017 and 2018, Carthage was named a top producer of Fulbright Scholars by the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs.

    • Things look new at Carthage because they are. Our athletic and recreation center, student union, computer labs, audiovisual production suite, and numerous residence halls have all been constructed or newly renovated in the last 10 years. Our new science center caps it off.

    • Carthage offers majors, minors and concentrations in more than 50 areas of study, from archaeology to athletic training, neuroscience to music theatre.

    • Our Summer Undergraduate Research Experience offers select students a research budget, one-on-one mentoring with a professor, and 10 weeks of analyzing, deciphering — and getting paid.

    • So the lake is kind of a focal point, but there’s a lot more to love about our campus — like the fact that our 80-acre campus is also an arboretum and wildlife sanctuary. Focused on keeping campus lush forever, we plant between 50 and 75 new trees every year from a variety of species.

    • Carthage was founded in 1847. That’s more than 170 years of leaders, makers, and go-getters going out and going forth. Read more about Carthage’s rich history.

    • More than 90 percent of our students receive financial aid, a hefty chunk of which is scholarships and grants — including $1.25 million annually from the Presidential Scholarship Competition and numerous Merit Scholarships. Learn what’s available.

    • Abraham Lincoln was an early Trustee of the College, and U.S. Secretary of State John Hay was a Carthage alum. The two still have a proud place on our campus. Spend some time with them in our Sesquicentennial Plaza. On warm days you’ll find professors leading their classes here.

    • Come to Carthage; hear yourself think — think … think …
      Legend has it that Sesquicentennial Plaza holds a perfect echo. Just stand with both your feet on the “1847,” face Straz, and start talking. “You’re the only one who can hear you, but you’ll be crystal clear,” promises English and theatre alumna Mikaley Osley.

    • Our Great Lake provides Carthage students with some amazing views. Think classes on the beach, lake views from the lab, and sunrises from your dorm room. “I love waking up in the morning with the sun shining off the lake. Nothing compares to the view in the morning,” says biology and neuroscience major Ann O’Leary.

    • Carthage awards up to 30 Presidential Scholarships each year, which range from 75% tuition up to full tuition, room, and board. Learn more.

    • For a full decade, NASA has selected Carthage students to conduct research aboard its zero-gravity aircraft. Lately, the stakes have risen. A team of underclassmen is grinding to prepare a tiny but powerful Earth-imaging satellite for launch to the International Space Station. Learn more about the space sciences at Carthage

    • Carthage is the only college or university in the Midwest where every freshman takes a full-year sequence of foundational texts of the Western intellectual tradition. Learn about the Carthage core.

    • With a student-faculty ratio of 12:1, your professors will know who you are. They will also know who you want to be — and how to get you there. Meet our faculty.

    • There are more than 120 student organizations on campus, from Amnesty International to Chemistry Club, to Frisbee and Latin Belly Dancing. See how easy it is to get involved.

    • True story: There are more than 27 art galleries, a dozen museums, and nine theatres within 25 miles of Carthage. Some highlights: The nationally recognized Racine Art Museum, the world-renowned Art Institute of Chicago, and the Milwaukee Art Museum. Learn more about our location.

    • What’s better than one professor? Two professors. What’s better than two professors? Two professors from totally different fields teaching a single class. There’s debate. Discussion. Differing perspectives. This is where the magic happens. That’s why every student takes a Carthage Symposium.

    • Imagine presenting your original research at an international conference — as an undergraduate. Carthage is dedicated to undergraduate research. Learn more about current opportunities.

    • You can’t hide here — not with only 17 other students in the classroom with you. That’s going to be rough some mornings. But later, when you’re able to argue your point of view thoughtfully, express your opinions succinctly, and meet challenges head-on, without fear … Yep, you’ll thank us.

    • Carthage is ranked No. 5 in the country for student participation in short-term study abroad. Every J-Term, hundreds of students travel all over the world on faculty-led study tours. Imagine a month in Sweden, Rome, Cuba, Senegal, India, Japan …