Tuesday, March 6, 2007

Letter to Celia M. Jackson, Secretary of the DRL

March 6, 2007

Celia M. Jackson
Wisconsin Department of Regulation & Licensing
PO Box 8935
Madison, WI 53708-8935

Secretary Jackson:

I was a student in Marquette University’s Direct-Entry Nursing program. I have been told that there is some kind of ‘special agreement’ between Marquette and the State of Wisconsin that allows their Direct-Entry students to become Registered Nurses without having degree or graduating from their program. This appears to be in conflict with the Nurse Practice Act (441.04), which requires "a diploma of graduation" before one can sit for NCLEX-RN.

On Tuesday, February 27th I e-mailed the Department of Regulation & Licensing at web@drl.state.wi.us to ask for a copy of this formal agreement. On March 5th I got a response from Colleen Baird, who identified herself as Legal Counsel for the Wisconsin Board of Nursing. Her e-mail stated:

This is in response to your question about the Marquette Nursing Program. I do not believe that we have a copy of this formal agreement. You should contact the school directly.

A complete transcript of the e-mail exchange is available on my web site: http://lydiaslicense.blogspot.com/2007/03/email-exchange-with-wi-department-of.html

Frankly, I find it hard to believe that if an agreement exists between Marquette University and the Department of Regulation & Licensing allowing Direct-Entry students to sit for NCLEX and become RNs without holding a degree (as I have been repeatedly assured is the case), that the DRL literally does not have an actual copy of this formal agreement present somewhere in their files.

1. Does the Wisconsin Department of Regulation & Licensing in fact have an agreement with Marquette University which allows Direct-Entry students to become RNs without graduating or holding a degree?

2. If an agreement does exist, then I demand a copy of the written formal agreement, and any other documents pertinent to the licensure of Direct-Entry students who do not hold a "diploma of graduation."

3. I would like references to any state statues pertinent to the RN licensure of individuals who do not hold a "diploma of graduation" in addition to the one I referenced above (the Nurse Practice Act 441.04)

Thank you,

Lydia Bertrand

cc: Barbara Wyatt Sibley, Deputy Secretary
Larry Martin, Executive Assistant