5 Reasons FastBacc is Distinct
By Beth Hultquist, PhD, RN, CNE
FastBacc® Coordinator, Clinical Associate Professor, LHSON
- What advantages does FastBacc® offer compared to other accelerated programs?
FastBacc® requires a huge personal sacrifice. Students move to Dallas and are in classes/clinicals year-round. The schedule is daunting. It requires a singular kind of devotion. Most FastBacc® students repeat the mantra, “I can do anything for a year.” But what we have found, a lot of life seems to happen within the year. Students still need to deal with personal and family issues throughout the year. We have parents of young children, new college grads, mid-career students with large families, students who commute, etc. Each of these life stressors affects FastBacc students throughout their year-long program. The THING which sets Baylor’s FastBacc® apart is our student support. From the minute they talk to Elaine Lark in admissions through orientation, classroom instructors, student support, chaplain services, etc., students are lifted and supported throughout the entire process.
- What distinguishes a Baylor LHSON FastBacc® graduate?
Baylor FastBacc® students set themselves apart as smart, critically thinking nurses who are great at working in teams. Most have had previous work experience in varying fields. This kind of diversity helps the cohort remain robust and interesting. It also shows employers their ability to adapt, learn quickly, and succeed in a challenging environment. FastBacc® students are very goal oriented and their year in Dallas solidifies these traits, which employers are looking for in their hospitals.
- How is the FastBacc® program competitively ranked among other nursing programs?
FastBacc® has been a huge success! I am most proud of the fact we do very little advertising.We graduate great students and the word of mouth has spread like wildfire! Our cohorts continue to grow, that first class had around 16 grads and last May we graduated 77 students! That kind of growth is a testament to the great faculty and staff we have at Baylor’s Louise Herrington School of Nursing teaching, supporting, and loving these students!
- What do FastBacc® students love most about the program, in your opinion?
Without a doubt, the daily interaction with faculty and staff. We have a fantastic faculty, solid curriculum and individual support which makes the accelerated program a success. By definition a FastBacc® student has had experience with other schools, universities, and programs, and they will tell you the FastBacc® program is a cut above the rest. The kind of supportive relationships we build with students lasts for years as alumni. When you get a Baylor degree, you are an alumna for life – graduate school assistance, life, job, etc. We are here for our students while in Dallas, but also as alumni if they need us!
- Describe the FastBacc® faculty and how they make a difference in the student’s education?
We have a great faculty in FastBacc®! All of them also teach in our traditional undergraduate or graduate programs which strengthens all the programs. Faculty are available to students, they offer tutoring, extra support when needed, and they all truly care about the student’s growth.
Bonus Notes: FastBacc® at the Baylor University Louise Herrington School of Nursing was started in the summer of 2009, the first cohort graduated in May 2010 and in May 2020 we graduated our 11th cohort! The inspiration for the program came from Professor Nan Ketcham who saw a need for an accelerated, second degree option for students desiring a career change or college graduates interested in nursing but unwilling to enroll in a traditional two-or three-year program. She and Dr. Cheryl Tucker brought the program together in design and delivery for that first cohort.