Taylor University recently announced the launch of two new academic programs: a Bachelor of Science in Nursing and a Master of Science in Physician Assistant Studies.
Additionally, the university also announced it is “carefully studying the possibility of launching a Master of Science in Medical Science.”
According to Provost Jewerl Maxwell, the university is hoping to launch the nursing program in the fall of 2024 and the M.S. in physician assistant studies in either the fall of 2025 or the spring of 2026.
The decision to launch the new programs came after careful analysis that included examining areas of historic strength for Taylor, feedback and interest from current faculty and students and marketplace trends, according to a university announcement.
According to the announcement, the addition of the new academic programs should draw considerable attention from prospective students.
“At the undergraduate level, the nursing program gives us an opportunity to provide prospective students with an option to pursue a degree that they feel that God is leading them to pursue and to complete the full four years at Taylor,” Maxwell said in an email. “The M.S. in physician assistant studies would provide us with the opportunity to significantly expand the number of graduate students and would allow us to draw an audience that we (currently) do not have any offerings for (graduate studies in health sciences).”
Health professions and related programs are listed as one of the most popular majors at Purdue University and Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis (IUPUI), according to U.S. News and World Report. At Indiana Wesleyan University, registered nursing/registered nurse is listed as one of the most popular majors, according to U.S. News and World Report.
“Not only do these programs represent strong interest areas among our prospective students, but they are also a tremendous match for Taylor’s mission and for our institutional history,” reads the announcement.
During the nineteenth century, Taylor had a medical school located in Fort Wayne.
“While based in Fort Wayne, Taylor’s nascent medical school brought recognition to our pioneering educational efforts, and it placed us on a trajectory to offer graduate programs from our earliest days,” reads an announcement from the university.
The addition of the two new academic programs comes after the recent announcement of a five-year plan for the university called Taylor Thrives.
According to the announcement, “A key element of Taylor Thrives involves widening the circle of learners we serve. Over the last year, we have explored dozens of possibilities for new academic offerings at Taylor.”
Bringing the new academic programs to campus will require multiple steps.
“Each of these programs will require significant and rigorous accreditation processes, but we are starting down this pathway by launching the search for the founding directors for both the BSN and MS in Physician Assistant Studies programs, which is the first step in the process,” reads the announcement.
The new offerings won’t be cheap either, as Taylor estimates the cost to launch the new academic programs “will be significant.” The university said in the coming months it will be communicating with donors in order to secure the necessary funds.
Maxwell hopes the two programs will be well received by the Taylor community.
“...We have the opportunity to build two distinct programs that will prepare graduates to be servant-leaders in health sciences and to build programs that are uniquely ‘Taylor,’” he said in an email.
Dean of Science, Education and Social Sciences Grace Miller has high hopes, too.
Miller stated in an email, “Taylor’s leadership in education in health care will add an exciting and energetic component to our Taylor community.”