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651 Fourth Avenue
New Kensington, PA 15068-6525
p. 724-337-5090
w. www.wpahs.org/education/citizens-school-nursing

Citizens School of Nursing

Citizens School of Nursing Rating: 3.7/5 (11 votes)

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The Citizens School of Nursing is the nursing school in the undergraduate health sciences department at Alle-Kiski Medical Center, which is part of the West Penn Allegheny Health System. The WPAHS states their purpose as to “Improve the health of the people in the Western Pennsylvania region.” When the program first opened in 1913 under the Citizens General Hospital there were only 2 students studying.

Today, the co-ed program has grown and more than 1,985 students have graduated since its start, with about 150 studying at a time. The program became one of the first co-ed programs in Pennsylvania in 1957 when the first male student joined. Accreditation was first granted by the National League for Nursing (NLN) in 1960 and continues to be recognized.


Students go through a 2-year program, although they are allowed to take up to 4 years. They take classes at Westmoreland County Community College and Penn State University. Throughout the 2 years students learn nursing theory and practice through classroom and clinical experience. The program consists of 6 terms, 3 terms in each 40-week year.

Classes include Introduction to the Role of the Professional Nurse, Fundamentals of Nursing, Introduction to Medical-Surgical Nursing, Maternal-Child Health, Adults in Crisis, Complex Stressors in the Adult Population, and Leadership and Management of Patient Care. All of these classes except Introduction to the Role of the Professional Nurse include clinical hours.

Most Popular Fields of Study

Unique Programs

The school considers giving back to the community they live and work in very important. One way they practice this belief is through a mandatory community service program. Each student is required to complete a total of 8 hours in their time at the school, 4 in each year. The school will post possible community service opportunities, but the chosen activities must be approved by the school.


Materials necessary to apply to include a complete application, reference letters, and required supplemental classes. The material should be submitted to the Director of the School of Nursing along with a check or money order for the application fee.

The application is to be filled out with personal information, previous education, previous employment, and personal comments. The personal comments ask for the applicant’s reasons for choosing a career in nursing, reasons for choosing Citizens School of Nursing specifically, and general goals as a nurse.

A personal reference letter is required, and a professional one is to accompany it for LPN applicants. The reference letter asks questions about the applicant’s experience, leadership qualities, and other relevant characteristics.

Courses required to supplement the Nursing School curriculum are English, Nutrition, Microbiology, Psychology, Sociology, Anatomy and Physiology, Transition and the Professional Nurse, Development Psychology, and Intro to Computing and Nursing Informatics. If these classes are not completed ahead of time they can be taken while at the Nursing School through a concurrent college course program. However, completing them in advance is recommended.

Financial Aid

The financial aid office offers 6 types of awards that students can apply for, each with unique requirements, deadlines, and offerings. They are:

  • Pell Grant
  • Federal Supplemental Education Opportunity Grant
  • PHEAA Grant
  • Citizens Loan
  • Federal Nursing Student Loan
  • Federal Family Loan Programs
  • Besides these forms of aid a Tuition Forgiveness Program is available for West Penn Allegheny Health employees and dependents of employees.

    Students may not qualify for all of these, but all students should definitely fill out a FAFSA form (Free Application for Federal Student Aid) to see what amount of money they can receive from the government.

    Student Financial Aid Details

    Secrets to getting the best scholarships and financial aid in Pennsylvania.

    Local Community

    The school is located in New Kensington, Pennsylvania, a city about 18 miles away from Pittsburgh, with a population of about 15,000 residents.

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    Campus Crime Statistics

      Incidents per 100 Students
    Aggravated assault N/A N/A
    Murder & Non-Negligent Manslaughter N/A N/A
    Rape N/A N/A
    Robbery N/A N/A
    Arson N/A N/A
    Burglary N/A N/A
    Larceny N/A N/A
    Vehicle theft N/A N/A
    Arrest N/A N/A

    Local Crime Statistics

      Incidents per 100 People
    Aggravated assault 15 0.11
    Murder & Non-Negligent Manslaughter 1 0.01
    Forcible Rape 11 0.08
    Robbery 17 0.13
    Arson N/A N/A
    Burglary 132 1.00
    Larceny 319 2.42
    Vehicle theft 12 0.09

    Student Enrollment Demographics

    Demographics – Main Campus and Surrounding Areas

    Reported area around or near New Kensington, PA 15068-6525
    Surrounding communityLarge suburb (inside urban area but outside city, pop. over 250,000)
    Total Population41,690 (35,594 urban / 6,096 rural)
    Households17,500 (2.36 people per house)
    Median Household Income$35,019
    Families11,549 (2.94 people per family)

    General Characteristics

    Title IV EligibilityParticipates in Title IV federal financial aid programs
    Highest offeringAt least 2, but less than 4 academic yrs
    Calendar SystemContinuous
    Years of college work requiredN/A
    Variable Tuition
    Religious AffiliationN/A
    Congressional District4214

    Special Learning Opportunities

    Distance LearningN/A
    ROTC — Army / Navy / Air Force  —   /   / 
    Study Abroad
    Weekend College
    Teacher Certification

    Admission Criteria

     = Required,   = Recommended,   = Neither required nor recommended
    Open Admissions
    Secondary School GPA / Rank / Record N/A /  N/A /  N/A
    College Prep. CompletionN/A
    Formal competency demoN/A
    Admission test scoresN/A
    Other testsN/A

    Admission Credits Accepted

    Dual Credit
    Life Experience
    Advanced Placement (AP)

    Student Services

    Remedial Services
    Academic / Career Counseling
    PT Cost-defraying Employment
    Career Placement
    On-Campus Day Care
    Library Facility

    Student Living

    First-time Room / Board Required
    Dorm CapacityN/A
    Meals per WeekN/A
    Room FeeN/A
    Board FeeN/A

    Most Popular Programs

    Student Completion / Graduation Demographics

    Total 5 1 70 76
    Registered Nursing/Registered Nurse 5 1 70 76

    Faculty Compensation / Salaries

    Effective as of 2014-09-20
    Tenure system N/A
    Average FT Salary N/A (N/A male / N/A female)
    Number of FT Faculty N/A (N/A male / N/A female)
    Number of PT Faculty 20
    FT Faculty Ratio N/A
    Total Benefits $106,948

    Elisabeth Bailey+

    Elisabeth Bailey is a freelance writer and editor with particular interests in academics, food,and sustainability . She is also the author of A Taste of the Maritimes: Local, Seasonal Recipes the Whole Year Round and writes regularly for Canadian Farmers’ Almanac and the National Wildlife Federation. Elisabeth and her family live and enjoy great local food in Lunenburg, Nova Scotia.

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