ST. LOUIS – Missouri Baptist University’s Trustees approved the offering of a Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) and a post-master’s certificate in play therapy at their regularly scheduled meeting Aug. 22.
The MSN degree will offer the following tracks: Family Nurse Practitioner (FNP), Nurse Educator and Executive Leadership. The U.S. Department of Labor-Bureau of Labor Statistics projects employment of advanced practice nurses to grow 31 percent from 2016-2026. The MSN program is set to start in the fall of 2020 pending approval from the Higher Learning Commission.
The certificate in play therapy is a 12-credit hour program for practitioners who hold a master’s degree in counselor education, marriage and family therapy, school counseling, school psychology or social work. Play therapy is a form of therapy geared primarily toward children. The play therapy program is expected to begin in January of 2020.
President Keith Ross informed the Board of positive enrollment news heading into the 2019-2020 academic year. MBU began classes this week with the largest freshman class and the highest number of returning students in the University’s history.
“The record-breaking freshman enrollment and gains in resident students are evidence of students’ attraction to MBU’s Christian mission and strong academic reputation,” Ross said.
The 2019-2020 full-time freshman class has increased by about 13 percent from a year ago. The number of students living on campus has increased by about 6 percent since last year.
In addition, Ross updated the Board on both the renovation project of the Jung-Kellogg Library and Phase II of Spartan Field.
The Library is slated to open in early September while Phase II of Spartan Field will likely be completed later this fall. The renovation to the Jung-Kellogg Library is aimed at empowering the 21st-century student to engage in innovative learning. As part of the project, the University is working to develop a modern approach in creating more functional open space areas, address technology needs and to identify innovative furniture concepts that support today’s student learners. Phase II of Spartan Field will include an enhanced walking trail from the main campus, bleachers, concession stands and restrooms.
In other news, the Board approved a resolution honoring Dr. Arlen Dykstra, who recently retired from MBU after 43 years of service. In addition, the Board granted Dr. Dykstra the status of Provost and Professor of History Emeritus.