Accreditation and Handbook Information

Accreditation Information

The Baccalaureate of Science in Nursing, Master of Science in Nursing, and the Post-Graduate Advanced Practice Registered Nurse (APRN) certificate programs at the University of Maine School of Nursing are accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education 655 K Street NW. Suite 750, Washington, DC 20001, 202-887-6791.

Handbook Information

This handbook serves as an addendum to the University of Maine Student Handbook. This University of Maine School of Nursing (School of Nursing or SON) Undergraduate Student Handbook (this Handbook) is intended to provide undergraduate nursing students with pertinent information about the policies and procedures that govern the School of Nursing.

None of the information contained herein shall be interpreted as creating a contract. The information included is up-to-date at the time of publication. The University and the School of Nursing reserve the right to make changes in this Handbook, policy, regulations and fees, as circumstances dictate, subsequent to publication.

Rev. 7-01-2022

University of Maine Mission Statement and Vision Statement

The University of Maine advances learning and discovery through excellence and innovation in undergraduate and graduate academic programs while addressing the complex challenges and opportunities of the 21st century through research-based knowledge.

Opportunity for all members of the University of Maine community is a cornerstone of our Mission. The university welcomes students, research partners, and collaborators into an atmosphere that honors the heritage and diversity of our state and nation.

Founded in 1865, the University of Maine is a land and Sea Grant institution and the flagship campus of the University of Maine System. This vibrant and dynamic university serves the residents of Maine, the nation, and the world through our acclaimed programs in teaching, research, and outreach.

Inspiring and dedicated teaching propels students into new fields of learning and promotes interdisciplinary understanding. Our educational goals are to help students develop their creative abilities, communication and critical thinking skills, and knowledge of traditions in ethics and rationality within the arts, sciences, and professions.

Internationally recognized research, scholarship, and creative activity distinguish the University of Maine as the state’s flagship university, where faculty and students contribute knowledge to local, national, and international significance issues. As the state’s doctoral-granting institution, research and education are inextricably linked.

Comprehensive outreach, including public service, Cooperative Extension, continuing education, and distance learning, engages learners of all ages in improving their lives and communities. Using research- based knowledge, outreach efforts promote sustainable use of Maine’s abundant natural resources and build intellectual, cultural, and economic capacity throughout Maine and beyond.

Through integrated teaching, research, and outreach, the University of Maine improves the quality of life for people in Maine and worldwide and promotes responsible stewardship of human, natural, and financial resources.

Approved by the University of Maine System Board of Trustees November 2010


The University of Maine transforms lives through research, teaching and public service.


  • Goal 1: We will support and grow Maine’s economy through new discoveries and by building a workforce whose members are engaged in their communities and prepared for lifelong success.
  • Goal 2: We will continue to provide accessible and affordable education, research and service through processes that ensure effectiveness, efficiency and quality.
  • Goal 3: The university will be a rewarding place to live, learn and work by sustaining an environment that is diverse and inclusive, and fosters the personal development of all its stakeholders.


The University of Maine recognizes that it is located on Marsh Island in the homeland of the Penobscot Nation, where issues of water and territorial rights, and encroachment upon sacred sites, are ongoing. Penobscot homeland is connected to the other Wabanaki Tribal Nations — the Passamaquoddy, Maliseet, and Mi’kmaq — through kinship, alliances and diplomacy. The university also recognizes that the Penobscot Nation and the other Wabanaki Tribal Nations are distinct, sovereign, legal and political entities with their own powers of self-governance and self-determination.

Link to the Memorandum

University of Maine School of Nursing History

In 1938, the University of Maine began offering a 5-year program in liberal arts and nursing consisting of two years of liberal arts education, two years nursing training in a hospital diploma training program, and a final year of liberal arts education. This program was discontinued in 1957 with the establishment of a four-year program in nursing. The newly created School of Nursing became the first collegiate school in the state of Maine. The purpose of the School of Nursing, approved by the University of Maine Board of Trustees (January 15, 1963) was to “provide a nursing education program on the baccalaureate level in the state of Maine with the realization that such education opportunity is available in other states and with the expectation the School will contribute to the improvement of nursing care in this state”. The school was housed administratively in the College of Arts and Sciences.Funding support for the new school came from a grant of $93,000 from the philanthropist and politician Frances P. Bolton. The school began admitting students in the fall 1958 and was initially housed in 22 Merrill Hall, with Jean MacLean as its first director. 18 students were admitted into the first class in 1958, with 11 students graduating and getting their pins in the school’s first class in 1962. In 1963, the School of Nursing received accreditation by the Maine State Board of Nursing and in 1964 the school consolidated with the Maine Medical Center in Portland whereby the liberal arts of the university were combined with the clinical facilities of the Maine Medical Center.

The School of Nursing’s four-year program saw all courses, both general and nursing education, taught by university faculty. The first two years were spent on the Orono campus studying general education courses. The curriculum during the last two years concentrated on clinical courses in nursing and took place in regional hospitals: Eastern Maine General Hospital, Maine Medical Center, Thayer Hospital, McLean Hospital, Boston State Hospital, and field experience with the State Division of Public Health Nursing.

While studying at the hospitals, students were housed in local facilities, including Simmons College while in Boston. In 1969, to provide better supervision of the nursing program closer to Maine Medical Center, the office of the director of the School of Nursing was relocated from the Orono campus of the University of Maine to the Portland campus. The school was administratively housed within the University of Maine in Portland. Pre-nursing majors at the University of Maine completed their freshman and sophomore years at the Orono campus, but then transferred to the University of Southern Maine to complete their junior and senior years. In the fall of 1982, a baccalaureate degree program in nursing was approved at the University of Maine’s Orono campus, in cooperation with Eastern Maine Medical Center. The program was designed in accord with the nursing program at the University of Southern Maine which was the lead campus of the University of Maine System in nursing education and accredited by the National League of Nursing. In the fall of 1983, the first group of forty-four nursing students registered in the new program. These students were able to complete their nursing degrees at the University of Maine, rather than having to go to the University of Southern Maine to complete their studies.

In 1987, the University of Maine School of Nursing separated from the University of Southern Maine under the directorship of Jean Symonds which allowed baccalaureate students to remain on the Orono campus for all 4 years of their studies. The School of Nursing consolidated its laboratory and offices and moved to Dunn Hall in 1995, having previously been in renovated College Avenue houses and the fourth floor of Chadbourne Hall. Also, in 1995 the University of Maine and Husson College/Eastern Maine Medical Center Schools of Nursing established Signa Proferre, a nursing honorary society. Signa Proferre become a chapter of Signa Theta Tau, the International Honor Society for Nursing. Following a university reorganization in 1996, the School of Nursing became part of the College of Business, Public Policy, and Health. Also, in 1996 faculty from the School of Nursing began to provide services at the Cutler Health Center. The School of Nursing received a grant in 1997 of $310,234 from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services for a project: “Nurse Practitioner, Nurse Midwifery Program.” The primary goal was to increase access of rural residents to primary care. By 1998 the School of Nursing had begun offering registered nurses an opportunity to earn a graduate degree in nursing. In 1999, students from the School of Nursing spent spring break in Nicaragua providing women’s healthcare in a clinic. In 2007, the School of Nursing became part of the College of Natural Sciences, Forestry, and Agriculture. The School of Nursing received in 2015 a two-year Advanced Education Nursing Traineeship (AENT) grant, funded by the Health Resources and Services Administration, Bureau of Health Professions. Funding covered tuition, fees, books and stipends for nurses enrolled in the MSN-Family Nurse Practitioner program.