Department of Nursing and Health Sciences (UNBSJ)

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This entry is currently under development. Please do not consider the entry authoritative until it has been completed.

Previous names: Division of Sciences; Department of Biology and Nursing; Department of Nursing

Established: 2009


Nursing was offered for the first time at UNBSJ in 1989 as part of a Bachelor of Nursing degree for Post-RN students who had already completed two or three-year diploma programs with at least one year of nursing practice. Prior to joining with UNBSJ, Nursing had been offered through community college at Beaverbrook House and then on Tucker Park campus. The decision to include Nursing as a UNBSJ program came about from the 1989 vote from the Nurses’ Association of New Brunswick to establish an entry-level baccalaureate Nursing degree by the year 2000. Initially, Nursing was listed under UNBSJ’s Division of Sciences. It was under the jurisdiction of the UNB Fredericton Faculty of Nursing until the year 1993 when the conjoined Biology and Nursing Department, chaired by John M. Terhune, was created under the new Saint John Faculty of Science, Applied Science and Engineering.

Between 1989 and 1995 the course offering numbers in Nursing had increased from fourteen courses to thirty courses and the four-year Basic Bachelor of Nursing degree became available in Saint John. The Post-RN Bachelor of Nursing degree also continued alongside the new program. A Certificate Program in Mental Health Nursing also became available to students in the year 1996. Shortly after these developments of the early to mid-1990s, the conjoined Department of Biology and Nursing separated into the Department of Nursing and the Department of Biology in 1996. The first chairs of the Department of Nursing were Linda Nugent from 1996-1997 and Judith Buchannan from 1997-1999. During their time as chairpersons for the Nursing Department, the K.C. Irving Hall was constructed and opened, providing new facilities for Nursing students and faculty. The department had previously been operating out of one of the university’s annexes. In addition, the Certificate Program in Critical Care Nursing became available in 2004. In 2009, the UNBSJ Nursing Department became shared with Health Sciences, which offered the Bachelor of Health Sciences degree, and in 2010 construction began for the $23 million NBCC Allied Health Building. In September 2011, the new building became the home to all nursing programs, along with other health professions. Beginning in 2013, the Bachelor of Nursing for Licensed Practical Nurses (LPNs) also became available, where LPNs could gain access to the LPN Bridge, a cluster of courses that, when completed, qualify them for admission to the Bachelor of Nursing program.

Prior to its joining with the Nursing Department, the Bachelor of Health Sciences was offered for the first time in 1998 with majors in Nuclear Medicine, Radiation Therapy and Radiography. A fourth major in Respiratory Therapy was offered in 2001.

Physical location: K.C. Irving Hall, NBCC Allied Health Building

Faculty: Faculty of Science, Applied Science and Engineering

Notes: Established date is based on the date that the separate UNBSJ department was officially stated in the calendar under its most recent name.


  • UA Case 180, Section 4, Files 14 & 21
  • Undergraduate Calendar (UA RG 86) 1989-2014
  • UNB Perspectives Vol. 3(1)

--Alloyd (talk) 09:46, 28 July 2015 (ADT)
© UNB Archives & Special Collections, 2014