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2014-2015 Undergraduate & Graduate Catalog

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Kirkhof College of Nursing

Dean: McCurren; Associate Dean, Graduate Programs: Scott; Associate Dean, Undergraduate Programs: Van Doren; Interim Associate Dean for Practice: Brintnall; Associate Dean for Nursing Research and Faculty Development: Coviak.



The mission of the Kirkhof College of Nursing is to provide quality nursing education to a diverse population of students. Kirkhof College of Nursing strives to improve the well-being of people through leadership in nursing education, professional practice and scholarship.

Kirkhof Legacy

Grand Valley State University named Kirkhof College of Nursing in honor of Ottawa County businessman and entrepreneur Russel Kirkhof, who donated the first million-dollar gift to Grand Valley in 1978. Kirkhof was so important to Grand Valley that his name also graces the student hub on the Allendale Campus, the Kirkhof Center. Kirkhof's commitment to education in the region inspires the College of Nursing's devotion to providing well-prepared health care professionals to the West Michigan community.

Program Information

Bachelor of Science in Nursing, BSN; a BSN for students with degrees in other disciplines; BSN completion for Registered Nurses; Master of Science in Nursing, MSN; and the Doctor of Nursing Practice, DNP.


The Kirkhof College of Nursing (KCON) at Grand Valley is accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) and recognized for outstanding teaching, scholarship, service, and research. The Kirkhof College of Nursing is located in the Cook-DeVos Center for Health Sciences in downtown Grand Rapids, Michigan. The baccalaureate program is fully accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (One Dupont Circle NW, Suite 530, Washington, DC, 20036- 1120; Telephone: 202-887-6791) and is approved by the Michigan State Board of Nursing (P.O. Box 30018, Lansing, MI 48909; Telephone: 517-335-0918). Graduates are prepared to take the licensure examination for registered nurses. The master's program is fully accredited by the CCNE. Consistent with CCNE guidelines Doctor of Nursing Practice program accreditation will be sought in 2011. Students completing the advanced generalist MSN degree will be eligible for and encouraged to sit for national certification as a Clinical Nurse Leader. Post-BSN students pursuing a DNP advanced practice emphasis are prepared for national primary care specialty certification in either pediatrics, adult health or gerontology. Post-MSN students who do not hold a current national advanced practice certification in a clinical specialty must complete the didactic and clinical courses that will qualify them to sit for national primary care specialty certification in a selected population (pediatrics, adult health gerontology). Students completing the DNP nursing administration and healthcare systems track will be eligible for and encouraged to sit for national certification as a nurse executive.

Undergraduate Admissions

Students admitted to the university as pre-nursing or nursing majors must complete a secondary application for the upper division clinical courses. Admission of pre-nursing students to the undergraduate nursing major is selective and highly competitive. Information regarding undergraduate admissions is outlined under the Academic Program section for Nursing. For questions or clarification, please call the Kirkhof College of Nursing at (616) 331-7160.

Graduate Admissions

Information regarding graduate admissions is outlined under the academic program section for Nursing. For questions or clarification, please call the Kirkhof College of Nursing at (616) 331-7160.

Student Services

The mission of the Kirkhof College of Nursing Office of Student Services (OSS) is to recognize individuality and to establish collaborative partnerships with students to engage in intentional and holistic advising. Staffed by four professional advisors and an OSS director, proactive outreach occurs to all individuals seeking a nursing degree at GVSU, while promoting diversity and fostering connections within the University, KCON, the broader community, and the nursing profession. The Center provides a wide range of services to support undergraduate nursing students with: degree planning including general education and major or minor requirements, and development and review of degree progress plans to promote academic success. Undergraduate students will be assigned a professional advisor when nursing is declared as their intended major. One of the OSS advisors is dedicated to graduate programs, providing academic advisement and guidance to prospective and current MSN and DNP students. For individual and group appointments, students may call (616) 331-7160 or visit us at

Student Organizations

Kirkhof College of Nursing is proud to hold the All College membership status within the National Student Nurses' Association (NSNA). All students are strongly encouraged to actively participate in the Grand Valley State University chapter of the NSNA. The benefits of joining include opportunities for leadership, networking, and volunteering in your community. Additional information about the Student Nurses' Association is available at

Since SNA is an organization for students in the clinical portion of the curriculum, students taking prerequisite courses are encouraged to join the Pre-Nursing Association. This organization is also student run, and is open to all pre-nursing students. The benefits of joining this group includes leadership, networking, social connections, and opportunities to learn more about the nursing profession. Additional information about this organization is available from the Student Life Office.

Honors Organizations

Membership in Sigma Theta Tau International Honor Society of Nursing is offered to baccalaureate and graduate nursing students who demonstrate academic excellence. The mission of the society is to support learning, knowledge, and professional development of nurses committed to making a difference in health worldwide. The Kappa Epsilon Chapter-at-Large is comprised of four nursing programs: Grand Valley State University, Calvin College, Ferris State University and Hope College.


Numerous scholarship opportunities are available to pre- and post-licensure students. Information regarding specific scholarships is available through the Kirkhof College of Nursing web site and the Grand Valley State University Office of Financial Aid web site at

Graduate Assistantships

The Kirkhof College of Nursing employs graduate students in full and part-time assistantships to support student engagement in faculty scholarship, teaching, and academic activities. Assistantships provide tuition and stipend support for graduate education.

Program Descriptions

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