The Department of Nursing builds on a rich heritage that began with the establishing of the Southeastern North Carolina Nursing Consortium in 1992, a joint RN-BSN completion program between UNCP and Fayetteville State University. The program was established to increase access to baccalaureate education for registered nurses who had graduated from associate degree nursing programs and hospital-based programs, to increase the number of minority nurses with BSNs, and to respond to the health care needs of citizens in the most underserved area of southeastern North Carolina. The Consortium separated August 1, 2004; at that time, the UNCP baccalaureate nursing program transitioned to a Department of Nursing within the University structure. The Department of Nursing is housed in the new state-of-the-art Health Sciences Building on the campus of UNCP.
In September 2004, the North Carolina Board of Nursing granted initial approval for the new pre-licensure BSN option to admit its first students in July 2005. The Board of Nursing approved 200 student positions for the pre-licensure BSN option. Since 2005, UNCP has offered RN-BSN completion and pre-licensure BSN educational programs in response to the critical need for baccalaureate-prepared nurses not only at the national and state level but also in southeastern North Carolina.
In February 2013, the UNC Board of Governors approved UNC Pembroke’s proposal to offer a Master of Science in Nursing program and to admit the first class of graduate students in fall 2013. The program offers three concentrations: nurse educator, clinical nurse leader and rural case manager. The graduate coursework is offered through a combination of classroom and practicum experiences; the classroom portion is a combination of face-to-face and computer-mediated learning activities.