PAXTON, MA – Ninety-three percent of Anna Maria College’s inaugural class of four-year nursing students passed their licensure exams on their first attempt, exceeding the results of state and national averages. The inaugural class of students graduated from Anna Maria College in May with Bachelor of Science degrees in Nursing (BSN), a program started in 2011. Other universities such as Rutgers University have also had exceptional results this year in their RN to Bachelor of Science in Nursing. It seems that many nursing schools are having a lot of success with a pass rate of 93.3 percent. Graduates surpassed the 2015 national average pass rate of 86.77 percent. The 2014 national and state average pass rates were 81.78 and 80.83 percent respectively, according to the National Council of State Boards of Nursing.

“We are so proud of our graduates’ important accomplishment toward their continued professional success,” said Anna Maria College President Mary Lou Retelle. “Achieving this impressive pass rate is a reflection of the dedication of these students and the high caliber of our nursing program faculty. In just four years, the nursing program has become one of our more popular majors and we’re pleased to see it strengthen as we move forward.” Anna Maria College started the traditional, four-year Bachelor of Science in Nursing program in 2011 under the leadership of Dr. Carol Gabriele, who joined the college that year with 25 years of experience in nursing education and leadership. In four years, the program has grown to an enrollment of nearly 200 students this academic year.

Coupled with Anna Maria College’s online RN-to-BSN, over 400 students are obtaining nursing degrees through the Department of Nursing, within Anna Maria’s School of Fire and Health Sciences. “Over four years, we have worked diligently to build a strong program, applying all of the industry standards and best practices to help our students succeed,” said Dr. Gabriele, Associate Dean of Nursing at Anna Maria College. “Faculty members are delighted to see our students establishing a strong precedent for our program with these impressive results.”

Anna Maria College’s Nursing program is accredited by the Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing which uses the NCLEX-RN pass-rate among its criteria for accreditation, with many colleges working to achieve pass rates above 80 percent. According to the U.S. Department of Labor’s Bureau of Labor Statistics, registered nurses working in metro Boston were earning an average annual salary of $94,600 in 2011, making nursing one of the state’s top professions.


Anna Maria College is a private, co-educational institution founded in 1946 by the Sisters of Saint Anne. With an annual enrollment of 1,500 students, the College prides itself on providing a values-based, service-focused liberal arts education. AMC has grown to offer a variety of undergraduate majors, as well as many graduate and certificate programs, both on-ground and online. The small student-faculty ratio allows for a highly personalized learning experience, while the modest class and campus size allow for optimal student involvement. The College offers 13 Division III NCAA athletic programs for men and women. AMC’s campus is conveniently located just minutes away from Worcester, MA on 192 acres in Paxton.