Rife and Carolyn Saunders Division of Nursing | Louisiana College

Rife and Carolyn Saunders Division of Nursing

Message from the Dean

Whether you are ready to start your career as a registered nurse, change career paths, or continue to the next level of nursing education, the faculty and staff of LC and the Rife and Carolyn Saunders Division of Nursing would love to speak with you about the exciting and innovative undergraduate pre-licensure BSN or RN-MSN programs. Come join us on an exciting adventure into the future of professional nursing. 

Marilyn M. Cooksey, RN, MSN, PhD

The Rife and Carolyn Saunders Division of Nursing (DON) located at Louisiana College in Pineville, La, offers two tracks to achieve the Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) degree.

If you graduated from a nationally accredited associate degree or diploma nursing program as a Registered Nurse (RN), you may be eligible to complete the 100% online RN to BSN program. Once you complete the BSN program, you will have the option to transition directly into the 100% online MSN program.

The traditional track is a four-year consisting of liberal arts and pre-requisite courses that provide a solid foundation for success in the upper-division nursing courses. The innovative Accelerated Bachelors of Science in Nursing (ABSN) track offers students with a previously earned bachelor degree the opportunity to complete upper-division nursing courses in 17 months, after remaining pre-requisite courses and admission criteria are met. Both programs are fully accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) and the Louisiana State Board of Nursing (LSBN). Successful completion of either track allows the graduate to sit for the NCLEX-RN licensure examination.



The mission of the DON is to offer courses of professional study from a Christian perspective that builds upon the liberal arts to prepare safe, competent generalist nurses who will collaborate with members of the healthcare team to provide holistic, evidence-based, patient-centered care.

The mission is congruent with the LC mission to provide a liberal arts education to honor and serve Jesus Christ. Furthermore, the mission is congruent with the AACN’s Essentials of Baccalaureate Education for professional nurses.



National Accreditation

The Rife and Carolyn Saunders Division of Nursing at Louisiana College is accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education 

State Approval

The Rife and Carolyn Saunders Division of Nursing at Louisiana College is fully approved by the Louisiana State Board of Nursing. 

Although Louisiana College's Division of Nursing remains accredited, the program is on probation with the Louisiana State Board of Nursing for falling below the required 80% pass rate for 2018 (77.27% for the 2018 calendar year).
Needed adjustments have been made.
Admitted students will be able to sit for the licensing exam.

The Louisiana College administration supports our nursing program and is fully committed to its continued success. Additionally, the Louisiana State Board of Nursing (LSBN) is not closing LC's nursing program next year. While the nursing program is on probation with the LSBN because less than 80% of LC students passed the NCLEX on their first attempt, the program is accredited and has three years to increase the first-time pass rate of its students. If LC nursing students do not improve on the first-time pass rates at the end of the three years, the nursing program would be not be permitted to enroll new students in the fall of 2022.

However, the LSBN would still not close the program. The LSBN considers the first-time pass rate while some states also consider second attempts, and LC students have a 96% pass rate on the second attempt. Furthermore, the nursing program meets all the standards and qualifications for national accreditation and is nationally accredited through the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE).

If you have any questions or concerns regarding our nursing program, please direct them to Dean Marilyn Cooksey at marilyn.cooksey@lacollege.edu

Contact information

Ms. Cecelia Edwards
Phone: 318.487.7127 
Email: cecelia.edwards@laccollege.edu

Marilyn M. Cooksey, RN, MSN, PhD
Email: marilyn.cooksey@lacollege.edu 

Division Information

Students are admitted to the upper division nursing courses in the Fall term of each year. This is typically late August.

Application to the DON is a two-step process.

  1. Students must first apply to Louisiana College.
  2. Application to the DON can be made by calling 318.487.7127 and asking for an admissions packet or following this link. Prospective students are always welcome to make an appointment to speak with an advisor.

April 30th of each year or the following Monday if April 30th is on a weekend.

  • Admission to LC
  • Cumulative GPA of 2.6 or higher
  • Successful completion of core and pre-requisite courses with a grade of “C” or better
  • At or above the national average for BSN programs on the TEAS or HESI admission test
  • Curriculum Vitae

No, but all pre-requisite courses must be successfully completed prior to the start of the Fall term In fact, most students are admitted conditionally with courses and/or the admissions test to complete.

No, it is a competitive admission based primarily on GPA and admission test score. Number of hours taken at LC, resume, and letters of recommendation are also considered. Prospective students may who are not admitted may re-apply for the following Fall term.

LC offers the Bachelors of Science in Nursing for our traditional and accelerated pre-licensure students (those who are not yet registered nurses- RNs).

The RN-MSN program for RNs who want to advance their careers.

Reasons for obtaining the BSN

Required for:

  • Graduate programs, such as nurse anesthetist programs.
  • Nursing management positions.
  • Joining the military as a nurse.

LC provides graduates with a well-rounded liberal arts education. The DON requires such courses as English I, II, and a literature, World Civilization I and II, General and Developmental psychology, College algebra, statistics, and several science/lab courses. For a full list, use the Unofficial Advising Tool BSN.

For questions on tuition and fees please contact Ms. Beverly Ingram at beverly.ingram@lacollege.edu.

Yes, qualified students can get grants, loans, and scholarships. Please contact a financial aid advisor at 318.487.7386.

All nursing faculty have the minimum of a Masters of Science in Nursing degree and years of e   experience in clinical practice.

The BSN prepares you to work as a competent, safe nurse generalist in a variety of practice settings such as hospitals and long-term care facilities. With orientation graduates can work in the emergency department, ICU, surgery, labor and delivery, etc.

Yes, LC articulates well with other community colleges and universities for pre-requisites and liberal arts courses. The DON will consider non-clinical course transfer credit.

Call Ms. Cecilia Edwards at 318.487.7127 to speak with an advisor or make an appointment.