When Emily Moore went to her freshman orientation, she knew immediately she wanted to go into nursing. When she finally applied to the nursing program, she was denied twice because of policy changes and revised prerequisite requirements, after already taking prerequisite and general education courses.
The application to the nursing program states students must “complete the following required pre-nursing courses or transfer equivalents with a grade of at least 2.8 and maintain a minimum overall pre-nursing grade point average of 3.2.” The application also states “openings are filled with applicants best qualified to succeed in the nursing program” and preference will be given to those who complete their prerequisites at OU.
“When I registered and had my orientation at Oakland University in 2008, I went to the Macomb to Oakland group because they pushed me there,” Moore said. “You can take your prerequisites at Macomb while you take your general education (courses) at Oakland. It’s the cheaper route and it’s also good for commuters who want to take their prerequisite (courses) at Macomb since it’s closer. So right off the bat I registered for one or two classes at Oakland and the rest at Macomb.”
Although many students are currently enrolled in the OU-Macomb program, it is “relatively new and it hasn’t been applicable to us yet because of the backlog of students that we’ve had,” Amy Johnson, special projects coordinator, said.
After the required classes
After Moore took the required classes for the nursing program, OU changed the prerequisite requirements from a 2.5 GPA requirement to a 2.8 requirement.
She retook a few of the classes and after completing the requirements and earning grades she was satisfied with, Moore sent in her application to the nursing program December 2011.
She received a rejection letter in the mail shortly after.
When talking to her adviser, Moore was warned they were going to change the rules in January, but she was assured it wouldn’t be a problem.
When finished with her class, Moore sent in her grades and reapplied to the program, but was rejected again.
“I figured I was going to be grandfathered in,” Moore said. “I just thought because I took my prerequisites at Macomb and turned in my application before the policy started in 2012, it wasn’t going to be an issue.”
Moore thought a possibility for not getting in was because the admissions office didn’t receive her chemistry grade. Her adviser said that wasn’t the reason, and the issue was that she didn’t take all her prerequisites at OU.
“I said to my adviser, ‘I’ve been going for nursing since I started school, and I’ve been taking my prerequisites at Macomb, knowing it was going to be fine, and my application was in before the new policy started,’” Moore said. “(My advisor) had no answer.”
She was advised to either retake all of her prerequisites at OU or change majors. Neither option sounded good.
“I’m not interested in changing my major, because this is what I’ve wanted to do for years,” Moore said. “I had my application in before and I was pushed so hard at the beginning of my freshman year to take my prerequisites at Macomb.”
Nursing school overbooked
Gary Moore, associate dean for the School of Nursing, said he isn’t familiar with the M2O program.
“I understand a lot of people go to community colleges to take these because it’s a lot cheaper to do that,” Dr. Moore said. “The issue at the current moment is we have a waiting list of students who are in the pipeline to be admitted into the school of nursing who were admitted before any of these changes were made.”
According to Dr. Moore, the nursing program previously had rolling admissions, which meant that if a student showed up and had all of his or her requirements completed, they were automatically put into a slot to begin the nursing courses.
“We were admitting people as far away as 2014,” Dr. Moore said.
The program had such an overflow of students applying, they switched to the new policy which gives preference to OU students. Now, no students from outside of Oakland, even some within Oakland who had completed their prerequisites, were admitted last fall or this winter.
“We’re not saying we’re never going to admit anybody who had taken their courses at Macomb Community College or Oakland Community College. What we’re saying is we’re giving a preference to those who have their courses here at Oakland.”
Dr. Moore said if it was between a student who had taken all of their prerequisites at OU and had a lower GPA than a student who had taken prerequisites at another school and had a higher GPA, the admissions office would accept the student with the higher GPA.
For pre-nursing students like Moore, the competitive program and the requirement changes have made it difficult to complete the program and graduate in a timely manner. She is now getting her associate degree in nursing at Macomb Community College.
“They put out the idea that there is hope, if you took your prerequisites at Macomb,” Moore said. “Until you don’t get in.”
Contact Staff Reporter Lauren Kroetsch via email at email@example.com or follow her on Twitter @lauren_kroetsch