Sacred Heart University has expanded its nursing program into a new School of Nursing, beginning with the start of the fall semester. The new School of Nursing, which opened with about 1,100 undergraduate and graduate nursing students, has 29 full-time faculty members and a support staff of 11. About a third of the students in the new School of Nursing are pursuing undergraduate degrees, while two-thirds are seeking advanced degrees and doctorates. About half of the 1,100 students are online students. Steady growth for three decades The decision to transition the university\u2019s Department of Nursing into a School of Nursing reflects the program\u2019s steady growth over the past 33 years, said Patricia Walker, dean of the SHU College of Health Professions. Walker called the transition a \u201cnatural next step\u201d in the development of the nursing department, which has reached a \u201ccritical mass\u201d and now has the ability to stand on its own as a separate school. As an example of its growth, 150 freshmen were scheduled to enter the nursing program this fall, representing a 50% increase from the 100 freshmen who entered the program in the fall of 2012. For information of the SHY online nursing program, click below: http:\/\/onlineprograms.sacredheart.edu\/msn\/msn-online-overview Sacred Heart is the second-largest independent Catholic university in New England, with more than 6,000 students. Learn more at sacredheart.edu.