The Foreign-Educated Physician-to-BSN Program (FEP-BSN) is an innovative, specialized, first-in-the-nation nursing program where foreign-educated physicians (FEPs) residing in the United States (US) who are either unemployed or underemployed attend an accelerated baccalaureate curriculum that awards them the Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) degree and become employed as registered nurses (RNs). In the five-semester upper division 125-credit curriculum, students are awarded credits for general education and science pre-requisite courses completed in medical school and matriculate for 63 credits of nursing courses. To allow FEPs to attend nursing school and still maintain their current means of livelihood, classes are held weekday evenings and clinicals are held on weekends. Seventy to 80% Hispanics comprise the program’s student body at any given semester with the majority from Cuba and Latin America.
The goal of the program is in line with the mission of the College of Nursing and Health Sciences (CNHS) at Florida International University (FIU): “…[to] prepare diverse health care professionals as providers and leaders in the delivery of high quality, accessible, culturally competent care within a highly technological and global environment…”
By the time that the students in Cohort IV graduated in April 2007, the program had already served 253 FEPs; 206 (81%) of whom were Hispanics. Of the total 253 students, 215 (85%) successfully graduated from the program. Forty-two more FEPs are anticipated to graduate in August 2010, and 73 more FEPs are anticipated to graduate with their BSN degrees in April 2011 and August 2011.