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Bachelor of Science in Nursing

Prepare to serve a world in need with a career in nursing

Fontbonne University will offer a baccalaureate degree in nursing beginning fall 2022.  The four-year program will provide a distinctive and robust curriculum designed to prepare graduates to sit for the National Certification and Licensing Examination for Registered Nurses (NCLEX-RN) exam and for modern practice as professional nurses. 

Our program is arranged to deliver a strong liberal arts foundation that is further developed into rigorous and holistic nursing coursework, which includes exceptional clinical and state-of-the-art laboratory activities.  Clinical experiences occur in a variety of renowned healthcare agencies, such as Missouri Baptist Medical Center, St. Luke’s Hospital, and Mercy Hospital South, that will provide students with early access to patient interactions and ensure career readiness. Additionally, simulation activities are integrated extensively throughout the program to afford students opportunities to develop essential clinical and critical thinking skills. 

Upon completion, our graduates will be prepared to provide safe, preventative, curative, and rehabilitative professional nursing care to diverse patient populations across the lifespan in a variety of healthcare settings.


Admission to the program is competitive. Priority consideration will be given to students who apply prior to February 15.

Program Highlights

  • High demand for nurses, with Business Insider listing nursing as the second most in-demand career over the next decade.
  • Small class sizes allow for personalized instruction and support.
  • A proactive advising approach assists students in managing academic challenges and aggregating stress early in the program.
  • State-of-the-art simulation labs to lend tactile credibility to the nursing theory learned in the classroom.

Careers in Nursing

The Business Insider lists nursing as the second most in-demand career over the next decade. The World Economic Forum agrees, reporting that over the next ten years, the United States is expected to need an additional 175,900 new registered nurses. Many of the local nursing programs have five applicants for each available opening.

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the job outlook projection for registered nurses at the national level is 12% between 2018-2028.  In the state of Missouri, the projected need for registered nurses during the same time period is 16.2%. The 2019 Missouri Nursing Workforce Report provides additional evidence of current and future demand for registered nurses in Missouri. Currently, 34% of registered nurses in Missouri are older than 54, and 11% are older than 65. This suggests a significant number of registered nurses in our region will seek retirement in the coming decade. The Report indicates that the unemployment rate for registered nurses in Missouri is only 3.3%, “indicating that there is a limited supply of RNs and APRNs within the state available to meet the current need.” 

According to the Missouri Hospital Association 2020 Workforce Report (St. Louis Region Profile), the St. Louis region has a 10.4% vacancy rate in RN positions, and the turnover rate is 16%. In the St. Louis region alone, there are over 1,700 vacant staff nurse positions.

According to the Missouri Hospital Association 2020 Workforce Report (St. Louis Region Profile), the St. Louis region has a 10.4% vacancy rate in RN positions, and the turnover rate is 16%. In the St. Louis region alone, there are over 1,700 vacant staff nurse positions.

Lisa E. Merritt, DNP, RN, CPNP, CHSE

Director of Nursing

Dr. Lisa Merritt received a Master of Science in Nursing and her Pediatric Nurse Practitioner credential from the University of Missouri-St. Louis in 2001 and a Doctor of Nursing Practice from Saint Louis University in 2015. Dr. Merritt’s nursing experience covers several pediatric specialties, including primary care, otolaryngology, and emergency/urgent care. In addition, she has held faculty positions at the University of Missouri St. Louis and the University of Tennessee.

Dr. Merritt has received several awards in nursing excellence and scholarship. In addition, her expertise in pediatric health and nursing education has led to numerous publications and national and international presentations. One of Merritt’s interests is using technology to support nursing education. In 2018, Merritt was selected as one of 30 nursing faculty nationwide to participate in the Inaugural American Association of Colleges of Nursing (AACN)-Apple Digital Innovation Bootcamp. She continues to integrate technology and innovative teaching strategies to increase engagement and meet the learning needs of today’s students.

“I’m thrilled to join the Fontbonne family and be part of this new nursing program. I am a native of St. Louis, so building a program in my community is an honor. In addition, Fontbonne’s commitment to excellence, integrity, diversity, and service aligns well with my own personal and professional values.

One of the current challenges for the nursing profession is the need for a more diverse workforce. The growing diversity in the U.S. demands a need to provide high-quality, culturally competent care to meet the needs of our diverse population. The nursing program at Fontbonne hopes to attract students from underrepresented groups in nursing – specifically men and individuals from African American, Hispanic, Asian, American Indian, and Alaskan native backgrounds. I am confident that our values-based curriculum, expert instruction, and small class sizes will give students from all backgrounds the tools they need to succeed.”


Fontbonne University’s BSN program will launch in the fall 2022 semester.  Students, both first-time freshman and transfer, may apply now by selecting the bachelors of nursing degree option on our free online application.

The nursing department, including classrooms and learning labs, is located in Anheuser Busch (AB) Hall, a modern, fully renovated classroom building. When complete and fully operational, the department of nursing will provide a state-of-the-art learning environment designed to provide students with an atmosphere where they may incorporate theory and psychomotor skills consistent with curriculum requirements. The department will be well-appointed with suitable equipment and supplies a nurse would require to provide safe and effective patient care in an acute clinical setting. Patient care beds are available for demonstrations, student practice, and competency testing. High-fidelity manikins and task trainers have been purchased for student use in practicing their nursing skills, as well as medium-fidelity adult simulators with audible breath sounds, heart sounds, and electrocardiogram, bowel sounds, blood pressure for use in the assessment and management of the patient in a simulated clinical environment.  Our learning labs will simulate an acute care setting, enabling our nursing students to practice safe and effective patient care in a safe and controlled environment where nursing theory and critical thinking may guide their developing practice. 

Nursing Skills Fundamentals

  • Nursing students can practice a variety of skills, procedures, and competencies in a safe, risk-free setting. The lab is outfitted with authentic and state-of-the-art equipment and supplies that simulate acute hospital and long-term care settings.  Students may lend tactile credibility to the nursing theory learned in the classroom.

Health Assessment

  • Students focus upon the separate body systems singularly and gain proficiency in properly assessing each through physical examination techniques across a variety of cultures and life spans.  Cultural competency and professional assessment provide the basis for learning in this lab.

Skills Simulation

  • Equipped with high-fidelity, computer-controlled manikins, along with medical equipment and supplies, scenarios can be conducted ranging from realistic everyday situations to more complex modules that emphasize emergency procedures.  Critical thinking is the basis for this vital learning lab.

Fontbonne currently has clinical partnerships with:

    • Missouri Baptist Medical Center
    • Mercy Hospital South
    • St. Luke’s Hospital
    • HSHS St. Elizabeth’s Hospital
    • Nazareth Living Center

Fontbonne University is in the process of securing additional medical facilities, short-term acute care settings, long-term acute care settings, rehabilitation clinics, and community centers in the St. Louis region so that our nursing students achieve a diversity of skills.

General education and pre-professional courses taken in the freshman and sophomore years provide Fontbonne University BSN graduates with a true liberal arts education, designed to prepare them to become ethical and informed global citizens who are able to contemplate complex ideas and generate creative solutions. Core nursing content then follows and comprises the junior and senior years.


  • BIO 220: Anatomy and Physiology I; 4 CR 
  • ENG 101: Composition I; 3 CR 
  • LIB 199: Information Literacy in Higher Education; 1 CR 
  • INT 105: Culture and the Common Good; 3 CR 
  • MTH 105: College Algebra; 4 CR  


Spring I:  14 – 17 CREDIT HOURS

(depending upon if core requirement is taken this semester)

  • BIO 222: Anatomy and Physiology II; 4 CR 
  • ENG 102: Composition II; 3 CR
  • History; 3 CR (core requirement; students may choose 2 of 3 categories)
  • COM 101: Communication in Everyday Life; 3 CR
  • MTH 115: Statistics; 3 CR 
  • State and Local Government; 1 CR


Fall II:  15 – 18 CREDIT HOURS

(depending upon if core requirement is taken this semester)

  • PSY 200: Developmental Psychology; 3 CR
  • Fine Arts; 3 CR (core requirement; students may choose 2 of 3 categories)
  • Literature; 3 CR (core requirement; students may choose 2 of 3 categories)
  • Physical Sciences; 3 CR
  • NTR 216: Principles of Nutrition; 3 CR 
  • PSY 100: Introduction to Psychology; 3 CR 



  • Philosophy; 3 CR
  • Religion; 3 CR
  • BIO 240/245: Microbiology/Lab for Health Professions; 4 CR 
  • Diversity and Justice; 3 CR
  • Computer and Information Systems; 3 CR
  • CTE 210: Introduction to Professional Nursing Practice; 2 CR 


  • NUR 310: Fundamentals of Professional Nursing Practice; 6 CR
  • NUR 320: Health Assessment for the Professional Nurse; 5 CR
  • NUR 330: Pathophysiology for the Professional Nurse; 4 CR



  • NUR 340: Adult Health Nursing I; 8 CR  
  • NUR 350: Nursing Research & Evidence-Based Practice; 3 CR
  • NUR 360: Pharmacology for the Professional Nurse; 3 CR



  • NUR 410: Women’s Health and Pediatric Nursing; 4 CR
  • NUR 420: Mental Health Nursing; 4 CR
  • NUR 460: Community and Public Health Nursing; 5 CR 
  • NUR 470: Topics in Professional Nursing; 1 CR



  • NUR 430: Leadership, Finance, and Healthcare Policy in Professional Nursing; 3 CR 
  • NUR 440: Adult Health Nursing II; 8 CR 
  • NUR 450: Transitions to Professional Nursing Practice (CAPSTONE); 3 CR



BSN Student Handbook 


  • Fontbonne University is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission (HLC).
  • The BSN program has initial approval from the Missouri State Board of Nursing, pending a successful site visit in July 2022.
  • Fontbonne University has applied for accreditation with the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE). The onsite evaluation is scheduled for September 2023.
  • Additionally, the varying colleges, departments, and programs of Fontbonne University are accredited by related and respective governing bodies. The affiliated clinical agencies of the Department of Nursing are accredited by nationally recognized accrediting bodies.


Questions about the nursing program?

New students are encouraged to contact Lisa Merritt, Director of Nursing.

Current students should speak to their academic advisor.


Contact Information

6800 Wydown Boulevard
St. Louis, MO 63105


Mon – Fri 8:00am – 4:30pm

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