If you are a caring person who wants to change lives, work in health care, and will study hard to meet your goals, then come to Great Bay! Faculty committed to your growth will guide you in class, clinical and lab to help you “think like a nurse”, learn new skills and teach others to stay healthy. You will work with the health care team to build safe and healing settings for patients.
Faculty are passionate about Nursing as a calling and a profession that helps people to be as healthy as possible. We support and guide each student to help maximize both learning potential and personal growth. We love Nursing and we want you to love it too.
Registered nurses work in a variety of settings and have many career paths they can follow. Our graduates are working in areas such as the emergency department, medical-surgical, telemetry, cancer care, maternity, administration, home care, hospice, dialysis, school nursing, psych-mental health, addictions, travel nursing, and corrections nursing. Some of our graduates have become nurse practitioners specializing in adult-geriatric, family, or psych-mental health.
Find out more information about different Career Options for nurses.
Prior to meeting all program course requirements, the matriculated Nursing student may be eligible to apply to the NHBON for licensure after successful completion (defined as achieving a minimum course grade of “C+” ) of the following Nursing courses:
• Nursing I: Apply for additional licensure as a Licensed Nursing Assistant (LNA)
• Nursing III: Apply for additional licensure as a Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN)
The associate degree nursing program at Great Bay Community College meets the state education requirements for a Registered Nurse license in the states of New Hampshire and Massachusetts. Great Bay Community College has not determined if the associate degree nursing program at Great Bay Community College meets the state education requirements in any other state, any U.S. Territory, or the District of Columbia. Contact the state regulatory agency for nursing in any other state for which this information is needed.
The associate degree nursing program is approved by the New Hampshire Board of Nursing (NHBON). Upon satisfactory completion of the program, the graduate is eligible to apply to the New Hampshire Board of Nursing (NHBON) and Pearson VUE NCLEX Candidate Services for the National Council Licensing Examination for Registered Nurses (NCLEX-RN). The New Hampshire Board of Nursing’s licensing regulations may restrict candidates who have been involved in civil or criminal legal proceedings.
Questions about licensing restrictions should be addressed to the New Hampshire Board of Nursing:
Email: [email protected]
Address: Office of Professional Licensure & Certification, 7 Eagle Square, Concord, NH 03301.
The associate degree nursing program at Great Bay Community College located in Portsmouth, NH is accredited by the Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing (ACEN). Contact:
Address: 3343 Peachtree Rd. NE, Suite 850, Atlanta, GA 30326
Phone: (404) 975-5000.
The most recent accreditation decision made by the ACEN Board of Commissioners for the associate degree nursing program is Continuing Accreditation.
A note on COVID-19 vaccination: Although the Nursing program is NOT requiring proof of vaccination for acceptance, many of Great Bay’s partner healthcare agencies have policies that require students to have received the complete series of COVID-19 vaccinations. Some are additionally requiring a 14-day period after the series is complete prior to attending clinical. Some agencies will allow medical and religious exemptions, but others will not. If a student is unable to meet clinical requirements due to making a choice not to vaccinate, they may not be able to meet clinical and course learning outcomes.
A review of all COMPLETED Admission files will begin in March. Nursing program applications must be completed by February 28 to be considered for acceptance in the fall class.
• Complete an application for the program.
• Provide proof of high school completion or equivalent.
• Provide an official copy of prior college transcripts if seeking transfer credit.
• Provide proof of completion of high school algebra, biology, and chemistry or equivalent with a grade of “C” or greater or proof of registration in a course with a projected date of completion by June 30th of the current year.
• Complete the ATI Test of Essential Academic Skills (TEAS)* with a Total Score of 66% or higher. GBCC’s ATI TEAS Testing Policy- Applicants are permitted to take the TEAS exam three times per 12-month period. Test dates must be at least 30 days apart. Test scores are valid for a period of two years. Scores may not be combined or averaged from multiple attempts. Test scores must be received by the application deadline.
About the ATI TEAS Exam*:
- The TEAS is designed to measure entry-level academic readiness for applicants and to predict success in the first semester Nursing course. It tests the areas of reading, English and language usage, math and science. Create an account and register to take an exam at: www.atitesting.com.
- Great Bay offers remote proctoring for the TEAS exam. For registration instructions and 2023-2024 dates, see the TEAS Dates and Registration Guide.
- To maximize success on the TEAS exam, applicants are strongly encouraged to prepare through self-study or taking advantage of a preparation program:
– Brainfuse: GBCC students can access Brainfuse (24/7 Online Tutoring) for TEAS preparation located on the Canvas course menu.
– Tutoring: TEAS tutoring is FREE of charge to Great Bay students enrolled in a credit-bearing class.
– TEAS Test Prep Series: Online preparation via Ed2Go. TEAS Prep 1 focuses on reading, English and language usage. TEAS Prep 2 focuses on math and science.
Special Consideration points are given to applicants who:
• has completed college-level Human Anatomy Physiology I and/or II prior to the February 28th deadline with a grade of “C+” within the past 5 years from the time of acceptance.
• is a current or former Health Occupation student from a CTE high school program prior to the February 28th deadline.
• is an active LPN, LNA/MNA, CNA, MA, Paramedic, or EMT (Submit a copy of your license/certification with your name and expiration date.)
• is a current or former military medic/corpsman (Submit a copy of your DD Form 214 or Joint Services Transcript (JST) or Community College of the Air Force (CCAF) transcript that shows your awarded military occupation.)
• has completed a Medical Doctorate program (e.g., DMD, DVM, DDS, etc.) (Submit a copy of your license with your name and expiration date; if from outside the US, submit a copy of your transcript or diploma translated into English by a certified translation service if not originally in English.)
Schedule for Lecture and Clinical/Lab*:
*lecture is in-person on the Portsmouth campus; clinical and lab dates/times and placements are determined by faculty and facility availability and are assigned by the Department. There is occasionally an evening or weekend clinical assignment or may be on an alternate day.
NURS111G: Nursing I
Lecture: Mondays, 10:00-11:50AM; 1:00-2:50PM; Thursdays, 10:00-11:50AM
Clinical*: Tuesday or Wednesday 7:00-2:00PM
NURS112G: Nursing II
Lecture: Mondays and Thursdays, 10:00-11:50AM
Clinical*: Tuesdays and Wednesdays, 7:00-3:00PM
NURS211G: Nursing III
Lecture: Mondays and Thursdays, 9:00-10:50AM
Clinical*: Tuesdays and Wednesdays, 7:00-3:00PM
NURS212G: Nursing IV
Lecture: Mondays, 9:00-11:50AM; Thursdays, 9:00-10:50AM
Clinical*: Tuesdays and Wednesdays, 7:00-3:30PM
Students who successfully complete the Nursing program and the NCLEX-RN exam have the option to continue their education in one of many RN-BSN completion programs including Southern New Hampshire University, UNH College for Professional Studies (formerly Granite State College), Rivier University, Salve Regina University, Colby-Sawyer College, and Franklin Pierce University.
Advanced Placement or Transfer
Admission via advanced placement or transfer is extremely limited and on a space-available basis. In addition to the admission requirements listed above (excluding the ATI TEAS), students seeking Advanced Placement or Transfer must have completed all prerequisite coursework by examination, challenge, or transfer credit.
(NOTE: Due to lack of available seats, this program is not available for Summer 2024)
A student must be a currently licensed practical nurse (LPN). In addition, in order to be considered for advanced placement into NURS211G, Nursing III, a student must successfully complete the NLN Nursing Acceleration Challenge Exam (NACE) I: Foundations of Nursing with a required overall percent correct score of 74% or better within the past two years in order to be granted credit. Please contact the Department of Nursing Chair for specific information about this exam.
Students accepted for Advanced Placement into the senior year are required to take NURS200G Advanced Placement Seminar prior to the start of the senior year. Upon successful completion of the Advanced Placement Seminar, students are granted transfer credit for NURS111G and NURS112G via Credit by Examination (CRE). The fee associated with CRE is waived for Advanced Placement Nursing students.
Nursing Advanced Placement applications must be completed by May 1st to be considered for acceptance in the fall Nursing III class. In addition to meeting all requirements, admission is on a space-available basis.
In order to be considered for transfer from another Nursing program into NURS112G, Nursing II, students must have successfully completed (defined as achieving a minimum course grade of “C+”) a Nursing Fundamentals course while matriculated in another nursing program, and the ATI Fundamentals exam.
An ATI Proficiency Level of Level II or greater is required on this exam within the past two years in order to be granted credit via Credit by Examination (CRE).
The fee associated with CRE is waived for students who transfer into Nursing. Nursing Transfer applications must be completed by December 1st to be considered for acceptance in the Nursing II class. In addition to meeting all requirements, admission is on a space-available basis. Preference will be given to applicants whose applications are complete and received by the Admissions Office by the deadline. Applications received after the deadline will only be considered if space remains in the program after qualified candidates have been reviewed. Applications received after the deadline (i.e. students currently enrolled in a Nursing Fundamentals class whose Fall grades will not post before December 1st) will only be considered if space remains in the program after qualified candidates have been reviewed.
Nursing Transfer Credit Policy
In addition to specific Nursing course transfer policies noted above and other Great Bay Community College transfer credit policies, a minimum grade of C+ (76.67%) must have been achieved in Human Anatomy & Physiology I and II and Microbiology within a five year period from the time of acceptance into the Nursing program in order to have these courses meet the Nursing curriculum requirements.
• Communicate professionally and collaboratively with individuals, families and members of the interdisciplinary healthcare team to promote mutual respect and shared decision making. (Communication/Collaboration and Teamwork)
• Utilize information and technology to manage information, minimize error and support decision making. (Informatics & Technology)
• Embrace the leadership role, promote change and foster achievement that will facilitate the realization of shared goals. (Leadership)
• Incorporate principles and theories from humanities, sciences and social sciences; demonstrate accountability for the delivery of standard-based nursing care that is consistent with moral, legal, ethical and regulatory principles. (Professionalism & Knowledge)
• Provide safe, compassionate, holistic patient-centered care in collaboration with diverse patients and their families, making practice decisions using the best current evidence to meet their individual preferences, values and needs. (Evidence Based Practice / Patient-Centered Care)
• Demonstrate an awareness of the overall components of the health care system through the effective utilization of resources to optimize outcomes in various health care delivery settings. (Systems-Based Practice)
• Utilize quality initiatives and quality indicators to deliver safe patient-centered care. (Quality Improvement/Safety)
Performance on NCLEX-RN Exam
|NH Pass Rate||96.71%||95.68%||96.20%||93.35%||89.70%||TBA|
|National Pass Rate*||88.29%||88.18%||86.57%||82.48%||79.90%||88.55%|
*as published by NCSBN NCLEX Pass Rate Sheets
Program Retention Rate
Within 100% of the time of the program’s stated length:
|Percent % Completed||76.08%||82.97%||82.22%||70.83%||64.58%|
|Number of Students||35/46||39/47||37/45||34/48||31/48|
The classes and coursework required is as follows:
First Year: Fall Semester
First Year: Spring Semester
Second Year: Fall Semester
Second Year: Spring Semester
Total Overall Credits: 68
*Lab/Clinical consists of the following components: the simulation learning laboratory, the health care setting, ATI proctored testing, NURS212 Seminar and other activities designated as clinical by faculty.
**MATH145 or higher meets the math requirement.
Program Specific Requirements
This program is physically strenuous and requires some heavy lifting. Individuals must be able to meet the general health demands of the program in order to satisfy course/clinical learning outcomes and the requirements of the field.
After acceptance and prior to the first week of classes, all nursing students must:
• Submit a current (within 1 year prior to beginning first Nursing course) GBCC Health Report Form including all required health screenings and immunizations:
- MMR (2 doses or positive titer)
- Varicella (2 doses or positive titer)
- Hepatitis B (3 doses or positive titer)
- Tdap (required within 10 years)
- Two-step TB skin test (required within 1 year; blood test not accepted)
- COVID-19 vaccine* (full series with booster)
*A note on COVID-19 vaccination: Although the Nursing program is NOT requiring proof of vaccination for acceptance, many of Great Bay’s partner healthcare agencies have policies that require students to have received the complete series of COVID-19 vaccinations. Some are additionally requiring a 14-day period after the series is complete prior to attending clinical. Some agencies will allow medical and religious exemptions, but others will not. If a student is unable to meet clinical requirements due to making a choice not to vaccinate, they may not be able to meet clinical and course learning outcomes.
• Submit documentation of Influenza vaccine or a signed waiver by October.
• Possess and maintain personal health and accident insurance.
• Possess and maintain professional liability insurance (purchased at Great Bay).
• Possess and maintain verification of current CPR: American Heart Association Basic Life Support or American Red Cross Basic Life Support.
• Complete a criminal background check through approved vendor. Students may be required to perform more than one criminal background check throughout the course of the program based on clinical facility requirements. Participation in clinical experiences may be restricted or denied based on results of criminal record check and therefore would affect the ability of the student to meet course objectives and successfully complete the program.
• Complete drug testing through approved vendor. Students may be required to perform more than one drug test throughout the course of the program based on clinical facility requirements. Participation in clinical experiences may be restricted or denied based on results of drug testing and therefore would affect the ability of the student to meet course objectives and successfully complete the program.
• Complete other health requirements/technical standards as determined by individual clinical agency affiliation agreements.
The goal of the Associate Degree Nursing Program is to prepare the student to provide direct care to patients in acute care, long-term care, and other structured settings. As a member of the discipline, the student collaborates with the healthcare team to provide and manage the care of patients. The student utilizes the nursing process as a basis for decision making in caring for well patients and patients with possible or actual health problems.
Learning experiences and clinical practice may vary in time and in locations including days, evenings, and/or weekends. The program may be completed on a full-time or part-time basis. Classroom and clinical components of the Nursing courses must be completed concurrently. All Nursing courses must be completed within four years of the date of entry into the first Nursing course.
Students admitted to or re-entering the program must meet current requirements necessary for graduation. Advanced Placement and Transfer are possible through transfer credit and testing. Students may enroll in Liberal Arts and Science courses prior to admission into the Nursing program. Enrollment in these courses does not guarantee acceptance into the Nursing program.
Students admitted into the Nursing program must take Nursing courses in sequence and must achieve a minimum grade of C+ (76.67%) in all major theory and science courses (Nursing, Human Anatomy & Physiology I & II, and Microbiology) and a grade of “Pass” in clinical courses in order to continue in the program. Human Anatomy & Physiology I and II and Microbiology must be taken within a five-year period from the time of acceptance into the Nursing program or concurrently as scheduled with the Nursing core courses (seven-year period for re-admitted students).
Students who do not successfully achieve the minimum grade in the major theory, science and other co-requisite courses as outlined in the program course sequencing will be Program Suspended from Nursing.
Transportation to and from the practicum site is the responsibility of the student.
Labs / Facilities
The Nursing Simulated Learning Laboratory is 5,000 square feet with a nurses’ station and eleven patient care suites. Each suite has a hospital bed, bedside storage table, over bed table, headwall with oxygen and suction, IV pole with infusion pump, and privacy curtains. A variety of manikins provide simulated clinical learning of technical, interventional, communication, and critical thinking skills.
There are two dedicated simulation rooms. One is to teach the labor and delivery process and the other is for practicing medical surgical skills. There are four computer stations for students to practice documentation and complete lab activities. There is also a lab classroom that seats 48 students.
Clinical experiences support students to meet course and clinical learning outcomes. Settings include hospitals, rehabilitation centers, long-term care communities, community health centers, schools, and visiting nurse agencies.
Our clinical partners include:
- Anna Jaques Hospital
- Cornerstone VNA
- Exeter Hospital
- Frisbie Memorial Hospital
- Northeast Rehabilitation Hospital Network
- Portsmouth Regional Hospital
- Wentworth-Douglass Hospital
Learning experiences and clinical practice may vary in time and in locations including days, evenings, and/or weekends. Transportation to and from the clinical site is the responsibility of the student.
The Great Bay Student Nurse Association (GBSNA) is an active club for students in Nursing or Liberal Arts (pre-Nursing).
GBSNA has hosted or actively participated in:
- Food, clothing and medical supply drives
- Test taking skills seminars
- NCLEX review courses
- Student Leadership Retreat
- Leadership and professional development workshops
- Bone marrow drives
- Membership recruitment and other social events
- The National Student Nurses Association’s annual convention
GBSNA has earned multiple awards and recognitions:
- GBCC Student Organization of the Year (2021, 2012, 2009): given to a recognized student club or organization based on the organization’s contributions to the College and community, development of its members and commitment to the organization’s purpose.
- Great Bay Gives Back Award/100 Hour Club: recognizes students, faculty and staff that have completed 100, 250 and 500 hours of community service during their time at Great Bay Community College.
2022: Heidi Sirois-Rohrbacher, Samantha Coombs-Pierce, and GBSNA (250 hours)
2021: Rachel Saul, Ashley Atkinson, and GBSNA
2016: Alycia Martin and GBSNA
- Heron Award: exemplary service to GBCC and the surrounding community
2022: Samantha Coombs-Pierce
- GBCC Student Leadership Award: presented to a student leader who has given honor to his/her position through leadership and has selflessly served the greater interest of the GBCC student body.
2021: Ashley Atkinson
2009: Susan Kent
2008: Coreen Toussaint
2005: Nancy Smart
- GBCC Student Organization Advisor of the Year: given to a recognized student club or organization advisor who best demonstrates his/her dedication to the organization, the College, and the community through their contributions.
2021,2018: Laurie Murray
2012: Lori Mancuso
“I had a really great experience at Great Bay and would recommend this program to anyone. The entire staff made the past two years the best time I’ve ever had during school.”
Kirstin Pesaresi, RN (Class of 2021)
“I feel that Great Bay puts careful consideration into sending us students that demonstrate motivation and maturity. They are ALWAYS a pleasure to have, and this has been a hiring resource for the unit on more than one occasion.”
Moe Jewell, RNC, MSN (Director, Psychiatric Services; Anna Jaques Hospital)
“Northeast Rehabilitation Hospital Network has partnered with Great Bay Nursing Program for at least a decade or more. Our staff has had the privilege to help facilitate the learning experience for the Great Bay nursing students to care for our community members with the highest degree of care, compassion, respect and responsibility. We are proud to collaborate with Great Bay College in mentoring the new generation of nurses that will ultimately care for all of us at some point with professionalism and excellence. The staff at Northeast Rehabilitation Hospital Network look forward to working with the nursing student each semester because your students are always so engaged in our care of the patients. We have hired many of your new graduate nurses over the past decade and many still work at Northeast Rehabilitation Hospital.”
Lisa Boucher, MS, RN, CRRN (Director of Professional Education; Northeast Rehabilitation Hospital Network)
“GBCC Nursing students partner well with the staff and the patients on the Medical Unit at PRH. The students critically think and have collaborative conversation around patient care and prioritization with the nursing staff. The GBCC nursing students are hands on with their patients and care provided for them. The Medical Unit at PRH is always excited to have students and welcomes them each semester.“
Julia Christenbury, BSN, RN (Nurse Manager, Medical Oncology; Portsmouth Regional Hospital)
“I transferred to Great Bay from a four-year college because I thought Great Bay provided a better opportunity for me to succeed in my studies. I love how challenging the nursing program is and I am confident that I will be prepared for a full-time position in critical care, as well as continuing my education. Great Bay has given me a strong sense of community and friends that I will value for the rest of my life.”
Emily Brashear, RN (Class of 2020)
“Great Bay’s nursing program was an affordable and efficient way to earn my R.N. license. The program boasts high NCLEX scores and offers a wide variety of clinical experiences. I would’ve never considered homecare as an option until I had the opportunity, through Great Bay’s Nursing program, to experience it first-hand. I’ve been working as a home health nurse since I graduated and couldn’t be happier.”
Johanna Cannon, RN (Class of 2016)
Foundation for Seacoast Health
Foundation for Seacoast Health administers a scholarship each year. To be eligible for award consideration, applicants must be a current resident of one of the following communities (Portsmouth, North Hampton, Greenland, Rye, Newington and New Castle, New Hampshire; or Kittery, Eliot, and York, Maine). Applicants must be pursuing a health-related field of study as an undergraduate (not limited to high school seniors) or graduate student in an accredited institution of learning. Consideration will be given to academic achievement, workforce shortage areas on the Seacoast, job experience, community service, evidence of dedication to the chosen field of study, financial need, and the likelihood of the applicant to return to the region to practice their profession. For more information: https://www.foundationforseacoasthealth.org/
RiverWoods Exeter Charitable Funds Committee
The residents of RiverWoods Exeter, a local continuing care retirement community, administer a scholarship for freshmen nursing students. Students who apply must have a minimum GPA, complete an essay, and show interest for working with senior adults upon graduation.
Four to seven $2,000 scholarships are awarded annually to freshmen nursing students towards their third semester tuition.
The Alice M. and Samuel Yarnold Scholarship Trust
The Alice M. and Samuel Yarnold Scholarship Trust administers scholarships in the amount of $1,000-$5,000 for NH residents pursuing a career in nursing, medicine, or social work, with financial need and scholastic excellence.
The New Hampshire Charitable Foundation
The New Hampshire Charitable Foundation is the largest provider of publicly available scholarships in New Hampshire. They are committed to finding and funding the most promising students with the greatest financial need.
Awards will range from $100 to $3,500 depending on financial need. Applicants will be notified of the results within six weeks after submission.
Emerson and Ruth McCourt Charitable Trust
The College administers annual scholarships from the Emerson and Ruth McCourt Charitable Trust to qualified NH residents in the Nursing program who have achieved an above average GPA.
Up to forty $500-$1,000 scholarships are granted on an annual basis.
Foundation for New Hampshire Community Colleges
The Foundation for New Hampshire Community Colleges has scholarships available for currently matriculated students at GBCC. Create an account at https://ccsnh.awardspring.com/
The Department of Nursing is proud to have many faculty and students who have been recognized by the Community College System of NH, the College, and Department with the following awards:
GBCC President’s Award for Outstanding Student: is presented to a student who has demonstrated academic excellence in his/her classes and has made outstanding contributions to the College and the community.
- 2023: Rebekah Greason
- 2022: Samantha Coombs-Pierce
- 2021: Ashley Atkinson
- 2019: Cristina Barbaresi
- 2012: Ashley Hawkins
- 2010: Melody Rees
- 2009: Laurie Murray
- 2008: Coreen Toussaint
Nightingale Award for Exemplary Clinical Practice: This award is presented at the Pinning Ceremony to a senior nursing student who displayed exceptional professionalism, confidence and critical thinking ability in each of the clinical areas, demonstrating compassion, inquisitiveness, and self-motivation.
- 2023: Jae’Wuan Horton
Nightingale Award for Professionalism and Academic Excellence: This award is presented at the Pinning Ceremony to a senior nursing student who throughout the Nursing Program consistently demonstrates excellence in the classroom and clinical areas, as well as provides mentorship and service within the college community.
- 2023: Rebekah Greason
Chancellor’s Award for Teaching Excellence: Awarded annually to a full-time faculty member at GBCC. Nominations are from faculty, staff and students. Criteria includes: innovation, impact on students, community involvement, college service or professional development.
- 2022: Professor Kelly McDonough
- 2018: Professor Laurie Murray
- 2016: Professor Nancy DeSotto
- 2015: Professor Dulcinea Kaufman
- 2007: Professor Mary Churchman
President’s Award for Outstanding Adjunct: Awarded annually to an adjunct whose commitment to GBCC serves academic integrity and student needs in the greater interest of the teaching learning community. Nominations are from faculty, staff and students.
- 2023: Professor Kimberly Mihelich
- 2021: Professor Reid Gourley