AMU Launches New Nursing Program with State Approval, $1 Million Gift


President Jim Towey announced that the Florida Board of Nursing has approved a new four-year Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) program at Ave Maria University.  A $1 million gift from an anonymous donor will fund the launching of this new major at the University.  This is the first four-year BSN program in Collier County.

“We are thrilled that the state of Florida has approved our new program and excited about what this will mean for our students, the future of Ave Maria, and the fulfillment of founder Tom Monaghan’s vision,” said Towey.  “America needs more caring, ethical and competent nurses as the ‘age wave’ envelops our Nation, and Ave Maria University will now be providing them.”

The first core nursing courses will be offered in the fall of 2015 and will help students meet the demands of a rapidly changing healthcare environment.  Infused throughout the curriculum will be the University’s commitment to its Catholic mission which instills in students an awareness of the importance of administering compassion for the sick and the suffering, and respecting for life, from conception to natural death.

The program will incorporate a “fundamentals and simulation lab” with state-of-the-art equipment and resources to facilitate student learning. A smaller faculty-to-student ratio will help enhance learning and students will be provided with clinical experiences in local healthcare organizations and agencies within the Southwest Florida community. A majority of the faculty teaching in the Nursing program hold doctoral degrees.

The program will operate under the direction of Dr. Denise McNulty, DNP, MSN, RN-BC, ARNP. Originally from Philadelphia, Dr. McNulty has resided in the Naples community for the past fourteen years. She is a graduate of Duquesne University’s Doctor of Nursing Practice Program and obtained her Masters of Science in Nursing from the University of Pennsylvania. She has a Bachelor’s of Science in Nursing from Holy Family University, a Post-Masters in Teaching from the University of Pennsylvania, a Post-Masters in Health Administration from St. Joseph’s University, and a Post-Masters in Psychiatric/Mental Health Nursing from Duquesne University. Dr. McNulty is a Florida licensed Advanced Registered Nurse Practitioner with more than twenty-five years of experience in various clinical, teaching, and administrative roles.

The University is recruiting existing and prospective students for the fall of 2015. 

Vice President for Academic Affairs Michael Dauphinais said that the Nursing program brings to 30 the number of majors offered at Ave Maria, up from 11 in 2011.  “We have come a long way in a short time, thanks to our faculty and their extraordinary efforts,” he said.
Click here to download press release in PDF form.
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