75 Years of Excellence in Nursing

Keuka College’s Nursing program: A Tradition of Excellence

For generations, Keuka College-educated nurses have provided care and comfort to the communities where they serve, bringing health care, wellness education, and healing to surgical centers, maternity wards, intensive care units and private practices across the country, as well as clinics and field hospitals half a world away. To mark the 75th anniversary of our Nursing program, we invite you to join Keuka College Nursing alumni and friends to celebrate our storied history and commit to ensure our legacy as we strive forward together to meet the health-care challenges of tomorrow.

Answering the Call, Then and Now

As World War II escalated in 1940, College leaders asked First Lady Eleanor Roosevelt—who had visited campus Feb. 16, 1938—how the all-female student body might support the U.S. war efforts. Her advice? Offer instruction in nursing. Inspired, the College swiftly added new courses, and by 1943, launched a nursing major. Within that same year, the U.S. Army established a Cadet Nurse Corps on campus—making Keuka College the second collegiate school of nursing in the state.

It is a tradition that has been carried on proudly ever since. By 1949, the program was among the top 25 percent in the country for basic nursing training. By 1959, Nursing students made up nearly one-third of the Keuka College student body of 325. Throughout its history, the program has sent nurses–as both students and graduates–to health-care facilities throughout the region and around the world.

The College continues to meet the future needs of the nursing profession, including advancing the education of all nurses, by offering a master’s degree in nursing education, a program that was added in 2009. “We’re proud to be doing our part to help alleviate the national nursing faculty shortage,” says Dr. Debra Gates, former division chair.

As ever, experiential learning remains a cornerstone, modeled within the classroom. Here, students learn from faculty who are “not just grounded in theory” as educators, says Dr. Gates. All are active nurses, nurse practitioners, or focused on scholarship in their areas of expertise. And the College’s proximity to notable medical centers gives students outstanding opportunities to obtain meaningful clinical practicums.“Our faculty members bring the spirit of Keuka College to students,” she adds.

Indeed, six alumni are current full- or part-time Keuka College faculty members, and many regional two- and four-year nursing schools include Keuka College graduates on their faculty.

The College nursing programs are accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE), a point of pride for the nursing faculty and program leaders.

Still Superior in Service

From the establishment of the U.S. Cadet Corps to the hundreds of Keuka College nursing graduates who have cared for thousands of patients in the decades since, the Nursing program has always reinforced the College’s focus on service. That focus continues today as the program expands and evolves to meet new needs.

In 2015, a master's in nursing leading to certification as an Adult/Gerontology Primary Care Nurse Practitioner was added to the curriculum; the program has boasted a wait-list ever since. The College’s partnership with the Finger Lakes Health College of Nursing & Health Sciences offering a dual-degree program has been a resounding success, with full classes of students currently enrolled, and excitement among alumni for the reinstatement of on-campus nursing instruction.

More Nursing at Keuka College

Attend a Nursing Celebration Event

Join us at one or more of the three special events planned to commemorate our storied achievements in this anniversary year! Each luncheon or brunch brings together nursing alumni and friends of the College to reminisce, toast our shared success, and look forward to the bright future that lies ahead. The cost for all events is $25 per person. The final event, hosted at our home campus in Keuka Park, will include a ribbon-cutting ceremony with tours of newly renovated space in Harrington Hall that will soon serve as new, on-campus nursing labs.


Can't Make It To an Event?

No worries! We invite you to join us for Green & Gold Celebration Weekend, held Sept. 27-29, 2019 at Keuka College. It's a combined celebration for alumni, students, families, and friends of the College. Bring your family and friends for a full weekend of activities, including a Nursing Anniversary Reception on Saturday afternoon. 

Make a Gift

Our Division of Nursing doesn’t just have an illustrious past, it has an exciting future! Be a part of that future: A generous alumna has offered to match every gift to the Keuka College Division of Nursing up to $50,000. A gift you make today will count twice! On behalf of all KC nurses, past, present, and future, thank you for your continued engagement, commitment, and support.

Buy Nursing Anniversary Gear

Show your school spirit with anniversary apparel available from the students of the KC Future Alumni Network. A variety of colors and styles are available and your choice can be shipped direct to your door. 

Order Nursing Gear Now

Your Nursing Stories

What does Nursing at Keuka College mean to our alumni? Find out in their own words:

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KC Nursing News

The President's Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll
New York College of Distinction
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