The Hillman Scholars Program takes a unique approach by combining the nursing education traditionally associated with the BSN program with advanced study as nurse scientists and innovative leaders. The curriculum gives the Scholars a seamless progression from entry into the BSN program through completion of the PhD. Specialized clinical and research experiences help scholars address important practice problems that have policy relevance.

Hillman Scholars are expected to complete their PhD degree in nursing within three years after the completion of their BSN.

“I believe the Hillman Scholars Program will give me all the tools I need to be a successful nurse researcher, professor, and ultimately a leader in the field.”
-Leah Morgan, Hillman Scholar

Hillman Seminar
Highly interactive seminars assist in integrating the knowledge and skills of reflective practice and scientific discovery. During these seminars, the scholars learn from today’s innovators, including the Hillman Scholar mentors, campus entrepreneurs, visiting scholars, colleagues from the Research Triangle and other research consultants.

Learn how to use science to improve health care

  • Being part of a mentor’s research team provides relevant research skills for completing the undergraduate Honor’s Project and then building on it to complete dissertation research.
  • Individualized clinical experiences, tied to the scholars’ research interests, help scholars envision innovations that improve the care of patient populations and bring value to patients, providers and systems.
  • The scholars learn how to link scientific inquiry with real-world innovation by joining clinical research teams that are examining problems in practice. Through this experience, they learn how new models of care are tested and observe PhD-prepared nurse scientists in action.

Financial Support

Each Hillman Scholar will receive a forgivable education loan for the undergraduate nursing program ($15,000 per year). They will also receive doctoral training support for three years following the completion of the BSN that will cover tuition, living stipend, health insurance and travel to annual Hillman meetings.


Curriculum FAQs

A: The undergraduate portion of the program typically spans four semesters, while the PhD portion spans an additional three calendar years.
A: Yes, in order to move the Hillman Scholars forward to the PhD in a timely fashion, course work, research and mentoring will continue though all summer sessions.
A: Yes, upon completion of the pre-licensure requirements, during the BRIDGE summer session, Hillman Scholars must apply for and successfully complete the National Council Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses (NCLEX-RN) exam at which point they will become a registered nurse (RN).
A: Yes. The Honors Project occurs in the latter portion of the undergraduate course work. This project is an essential component of the Hillman Scholars Program. Hillman Scholars will work with their research faculty mentor who will guide them through the Honors Project. Their dissertation builds on the work done for the Honors Project.

Undergraduate Course Plan

BSN — Hillman Scholars

Summer

Nurs 254: Discipline of Nursing I (1 credit across both summer sessions)

Nurs 261: Nursing Role in Normal Nutrition (2 credits across both summer sessions)

Nurs 361: Pathophysiology (3 credits across both summer sessions)

Nurs 366: Health Assessment (3 credits across both summer sessions)

Fall

Nurs 253: Individual Development Across the Lifespan (2 credits)

Nurs 360: Concepts, Processes and Skills for Evidence Based Nursing (4 credits)

Nurs 362: Pharmacology Across the Lifespan (3 credits)

Nurs 364: Nursing Care of Adults with Major Health Problems 1 (6 credits)

Spring

Nurs 382: Family-Centered Genomic Health Care (1 credit)

Nurs 477: Psychiatric/Mental Health Concepts for Broad Clinical Application in Nursing (5 credits)

Nurs 479: Maternal/Newborn Nursing (5 credits)

Nurs 675: Hillman Scholars in Nursing Innovation: Integrative Seminar (1 credit)

Summer

Nurs 487: Practicum in Nursing: Work-Study Experience (3 credits across both summer sessions)

or

Nurs 489: Practicum in Nursing: Global Health Experience (3 credits across both summer sessions)

Fall

Nurs 470: Public Health Nursing (5 credits)

Nurs 472: Nursing Care of Infants, Children and their Families (5 credits)

Nurs 671: Nursing Inquiry and Evidence-Based Practice for Advanced Scholarship (3 credits)

Nurs 675: Hillman Scholars in Nursing Innovation: Integrative Seminar (1 credit)

Nurs 691H: Honors Study (3 credits)

Spring

Nurs 588: Leadership in Health Care Organizations (4 credits)

Nurs 591: Nursing Care of Adults with Major Health Problems II (8 credits)

Nurs 675: Hillman Scholars in Nursing Innovation: Integrative Seminar (1 credit)

Nurs 692H: Honors Study (3 credits)


72 Total Credits
*Note: Students must take either N487, N488 or N489 to graduate. N487 is offered in summer, N489 in summer or fall, N488 in spring.

ABSN — Hillman Scholars

Spring

Nurs 254: Discipline of Nursing I (1 credit)

Nurs 360: Concepts, Processes and Skills for Evidence Based Nursing (4 credits)

Nurs 361: Pathophysiology (3 credits)

Nurs 362: Pharmacology Across the Lifespan (3 credits)

Nurs 366: Health Assessment (3 credits)

Nurs 382: Family-Centered Genomic Health Care (1 credit)

Nurs 675: Hillman Scholars in Nursing Innovation: Integrative Seminar (1 credit)

Summer

Nurs 364: Nursing Care of Adults with Major Health Problems I (6 credits across both summer sessions)

Nurs 477: Psychiatric/Mental Health Concepts for Broad Clinical Application in Nursing (5 credits across both summer sessions)

Fall

Nurs 479: Maternal/Newborn Nursing (5 credits)

Nurs 591: Nursing Care of Adults with Major Health Problems II (8 credits)

Nurs 671: Nursing Inquiry and Evidence-Based Practice for Advanced Scholarship (3 credits)

Nurs 675: Hillman Scholars in Nursing Innovation: Integrative Seminar (1 credit)

Nurs 691H: Honors Study (3 credits)

Spring

Nurs 470: Public Health Nursing (5 credits)

Nurs 472: Nursing Care of Infants, Children and their Families (5 credits)

Nurs 488: Practicum in Nursing: Health Services Improvement Work Experience (3 credits)

Nurs 588: Leadership in Health Care Organizations (4 credits)

Nurs 675: Hillman Scholars in Nursing Innovation: Integrative Seminar (1 credit)

Nurs 692H: Honors Study (3 credits)


67 Total Credits
*Note: Students must take either N487, N488 or N489 to graduate. N487 is offered in summer, N489 in summer or fall, N488 in spring.