Mission and Philosophy


The mission for Patty Hanks Shelton School of Nursing (PHSSN) is to educate baccalaureate and advanced practice nurses for lives of Christian service and leadership to meet the ever changing needs of a global society.


The school functions within the structure of an educational consortium consisting of McMurry University and Hardin-Simmons University. We accept the underlying philosophy and objectives of the consortium universities that individuals be educationally prepared in a manner that promotes the development of intellectual, cultural, moral and religious values. Faculty believe the role of private, church related universities is to provide the scientific and liberal arts foundation and the moral and religious values needed for individuals seeking intellectual, spiritual, cultural and economic self-improvement.

Nursing is a profession that is responsive to the changing health care needs of individuals and communities and is supported by an ever-changing foundation of knowledge from both the arts and the sciences. This knowledge establishes a foundation for development of a core competency in professional nursing. Nurses, through study and interdisciplinary collaborations, expand their understanding of health, environment and person. This expansion of knowledge provides a holistic foundation for nursing care.

The development of critical thinking, communication, clinical skills, creativity and self-direction are essential elements in nursing education. Through the educational process, faculty seek to promote awareness of social, cultural, racial and ethnic diversity, and provide opportunities for students to experience success in their professional pursuits. We value diversity in both students and faculty, believing it enriches professional growth and development. The educational process is a shared responsibility between faculty and students that promotes progressive mastery and increased learner maturity.

The baccalaureate education in nursing prepares a generalist capable of providing and coordinating care to clients. Faculty believe that graduates of baccalaureate nursing programs should be able to synthesize information from various disciplines, reason logically, analyze critically, apply principles of teaching and learning and communicate effectively with clients and other health care professionals. Faculty expect graduates to be able to apply knowledge exemplifying legal, ethical and professional standards in formulation of judgment and performance of skills in a broad range of clinical situations and settings. Graduates of PHSSN are able to demonstrate entry level competencies and function in the role of Provider of Care, Coordinator of Care and as a Member of a Profession.

Implicit in the practice of a professional nurse is the acceptance of accountability for life-long learning as foundation for professional growth, competent practice and effective leadership. Life-long commitment to intellectual inquiries supports optimal development of both the individual and the profession. (Revised 2016)

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