The new national model for human health emphasizes prevention: encouraging wellness rather than treating illness, promoting healthy communities rather than managing disease states. Wellness, healthy lifestyles, and physical fitness have long been the focus of our school, putting our graduates out front of the sweeping change that is transforming the health professions.
Our programs in nursing, public health, and health and exercise science prepare valued employees with the skills, knowledge, and aptitude for continual, lifelong learning, putting them on a trajectory for long-term career growth. Alumni of our school, educated at the undergraduate, graduate, and certificate levels, can be found across the professional spectrum, leading the welcome shift toward proactive health and wellness.
Nursing: Continual Challenges and Advancement
Graduates of our bachelor of science in nursing (BSN) program are sought-after hires, with 100% of our last graduating class finding employment within six months of graduation. Nurses like ours—who hold a four-year BSN rather than a two-year associate’s degree—are the preferred nursing professionals for the advanced skills and knowledge that lead to improved patient outcomes. In fact, the Institute of Medicine has called for 80% of the nursing force to be prepared with a bachelor’s degree by 2020. To meet this critical goal, we offer both a traditional BSN program for undergraduates and an RN to BSN pathway for working nurses. Both programs are nationally recognized for excellence, with our students posting a stellar 94% NCLEX first-time pass rate.
Nurses with a BSN are positioned to take advantage of the many opportunities in nursing, with its varied employment settings and multiple avenues for continual growth and advancement. The BSN-prepared nurse can also build on the degree, through advanced study, and pursue management tracks, advanced practice specialties, and research and teaching careers, among other options. Alumni of our high-quality graduate and certificate programs are rewarded with challenging, fulfilling careers in advanced nursing and in management, policy, and leadership at regional, national, and international levels.
Public Health: Flexible and Multifaceted Career Field
A nationwide shortage of public health professionals is projected to reach 250,000 over the next five years, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, as the frontlines of health care shift toward disease prevention and population health. This varied and growing career field spans multiple settings (from community clinics to global health organizations), disciplines (from mathematics to marketing), and professions (from epidemiologist to environmental engineer).
Public health professionals analyze data, coordinate social services, design media campaigns, allocate financial resources, manage community health programs, craft effective public policy, guide patient care and education—the possibilities are truly endless. Our new program in public health is just as flexible, allowing students to design a custom curriculum that draws on courses from all seven TCNJ schools to support any career goal. Intensive capstone internships, providing 120 hours of on-site experiential education in an approved public health setting, ensure that our graduates start their careers with an outstanding college portfolio.
Health and Exercise Science: Careers in Human Performance
Health and human performance is a fast-growing profession, as the importance of physical fitness is increasingly recognized across the lifespan, from our youngest to our oldest citizens. Exciting careers are available in the education, recreation, athletics, rehabilitation, and medical professions and in settings from schools and community centers to clinics and sports leagues. Our two programs—exercise science and physical education—prepare professionals with the skill and knowledge to advance healthier lives and stronger communities through fitness.
Graduates of our exercise science program launch entry-level careers in health and fitness or advance to graduate study in a variety of specialized career fields. One area open to our graduates who pursue advanced study is the health science professions, including physical therapy, occupational therapy, and physician assistance. Another is sports and athletic conditioning, where exciting careers in sports medicine, exercise physiology, and biomechanics are among the many options.
Graduates of our physical education program are well prepared for careers as teachers, coaches, and trainers. Our accredited program meets all state requirements for K–12 teacher certification in health and physical education. The quality of our program is made clear by our teacher candidates’ pass rate on the New Jersey PRAXIS exam, 92%, topping the state average. Our graduates can be found in school districts throughout the state and across the region.