HISTORY OF THE NURSING PROGRAM
West Liberty University is an accredited, coeducational, multipurpose institution with an enrollment of approximately 2,400 students. The College campus stretches over a wide hilltop, covering 298 acres in the northern panhandle of West Virginia. This location provides relative seclusion for study and contemplation, but is within commuting distance of three metropolitan centers: Pittsburgh (PA), Steubenville (OH), and Wheeling, (WV).
The Nursing Program became a part of West Liberty State College in the early 1970s with the establishment of an associate degree program in nursing. After only two years, the College was mandated by the Board of Regents (WV) to transfer this program to the newly created community college, West Virginia Northern Community College (WVNCC) located in Wheeling, which is 12 miles south of West Liberty. In an effort to service the continuing educational needs of registered nurses, West Liberty initiated an RN completion program in 1976.
During the early 1980s the Administration of the College began giving consideration to offering a baccalaureate degree program in nursing for basic students (non-RNs). It was during the mid-1980s that discussions were held between Ohio Valley Medical Center (OVMC), Wheeling, and West Liberty State College concerning the closure of the Ohio Valley General Hospital School of Nursing and the opening of a basic baccalaureate program in nursing at West Liberty. The West Virginia Board of Regents approved the new BSN program in spring, 1988 and the first Director, Dr. Donna Lukich, was appointed to implement the program in fall, 1988. In 1992 the first class completed the new baccalaureate nursing program at West Liberty State College and fifteen students, including one RN, graduated. In May 2009, West Liberty State College was invested as West Liberty University. The West Liberty University Nursing Baccalaureate Program is accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education.