Presence Saint Joseph Medical Center

1920

Saint Joseph Hospital School of Nursing founded.

Sister M. Lilosa becomes the first director of the Saint Joseph Hospital School of Nursing.  The first students entered on November 1, 1920.  Dormitories are in small cottages, south of the old hospital site at Broadway and Division Streets.  Classrooms are located on the ground floor of the hospital. 

  Student Nurses with the Sisters 1924
  Student nurses (1924) with the Sisters
  Graduating Nursing Class 1933
 

Graduating class (1933)

1922

The school becomes accredited by the Department of Registration and Education, State of Illinois.  The first graduation ceremonies are held at Saint John's Hall on October 27.  Seventeen seniors (10 sisters and seven lay students) receive diplomas.

1924

Sister M. Priscilla begins continuous service as school director.  Nurses' home residence for students is built. 

1935

Course affiliation with DePaul University in Chicago, Illinois and the University of St. Francis in Joliet, Illinois.

1938-1942

Students from St. Francis Hospital in Freeport, Illinois affiliate for pediatrics.

1943

A Cadet Nurse training program is inaugurated to prepare nurses to meet the needs imposed by World War II.

1946

The 500th graduate of the school receives her diploma.

1950-1957

Students from St. Charles School of Nursing in Aurora, Illinois begin pre-clinical affiliation.

1951-1952

Students from St. Mary School of Nursing in LaSalle, Illinois affiliate for obstetrics.

1953

Students affiliate for psychiatry with Fergus Falls State Hospital in Fergus Falls, Minnesota.

1954-1955

Students from St. Charles School of Nursing in Aurora, Illinois affiliate in basic science.

1955

Approved by State Board of Examiners for psychiatric affiliation with Elgin State Hospital in Elgin, Illinois.

1955-1959

Students from St. Elizabeth School of Nursing in Danville, Illinois affiliate for first year.

1959-1960

Students from St. Anthony de Padua in Chicago affiliate for the first year.

1964

School moves to temporary quarters in the new hospital building on January 26. Students participate in the big day of moving patients. On July 1, 1964, St. Joseph Hospital School of Nursing becomes the first day school of nursing in the state of Illinois.

1967

Sister Priscilla retires and Margaret Brophy is appointed director.

1970

Lois Benich is named director.  Authorized by Illinois Department of Registration and Education to offer psychiatric nursing on site.

1970s

The school sees an increase in "non-traditional" student enrollment. Older students return to prepare for a new career.  Increasing numbers of graduates plan to pursue a Bachelor of Science degree in nursing.

1973

Course affiliation established with Joliet Junior College.

1987

Following an extensive needs assessment, the decision was made to become an upper division college. Approval is given to confer the baccalaureate degree in nursing and change the name to "Saint Joseph College of Nursing."  Lois Benich is appointed President.

1989

The last class graduates from the diploma program.

1987-1994

The first BSN class is admitted in August of 1988 and graduated in 1990. The baccalaureate nursing program receives approval from the Illinois Board of Professional Regulation (1987) and the Illinois Board of Professional Education (1987), accreditation from the National League for Nursing (1994) and accreditation from the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Institutions of Higher Education (1992).

1992

Accredited by the Northern Central Association of Colleges and Universities (NCA).

1994

Accredited by the National League for Nursing (NLN). Lois Benich retires. Dr. Virginia E. Keck is named President.

1995

Enrollment reaches 185 students.  The Saint Joseph College of Nursing celebrates its 75th Anniversary.

1997-1998

On January 1, Saint Joseph College of Nursing becomes a division of the College of St. Francis and takes on the Allied Health Programs. A year later, the move to university status is formalized.  On January 1, 1998, the division is renamed the College of Nursing and Allied Health.

Find a Doctor