Nursing Education and Professional Development


nursing_teamwork_RN_residentsIt is exciting to welcome nurses new to Ascension Seton through our Nursing Education core orientation program and always gratifying to watch them discover that they have come to a place where nurses are respected and have the autonomy to practice excellent evidence-based nursing care.

In partnership with Ascension Seton Leadership, Nursing Education promotes excellence in nursing practice in today’s complex healthcare environment by supporting the development of competent providers and managers of patient care.

Our goal is to help you plan your career pathway and give you the resources to achieve your professional goals.

Clinical Education Center

The Clinical Education Center (CEC) is a unique interdisciplinary education center that offers an exceptional community context-based learning environment. The Center has flexible classroom spaces equipped with built-in multimedia technology, a state-of-the-art medical and surgical simulation center, facilities for teaching patient provider communication, clinical areas set up as skills labs for health professionals, a computer lab and a learning resources area.

The CEC provides an excellent environment for orienting new nurses and for other nursing and interdisciplinary professional development activities. The classroom and lab components of Seton’s RN Residency Program are offered at the center.

Professional Development

Continuing Nursing Education

Ascension Seton is accredited by the Texas Nurses Association as a provider of contact hours for continuing education programs. Contact hour workshops are offered each year covering a variety of topics that relate to clinical practice as well as professional and managerial issues. Other educational opportunities and resources available across the network include computer-assisted instruction, self-instructional programs, and a library.

Clinical Education Classes & Events

Ascension Seton is committed to offering ongoing educational opportunities. Clinicians can view our calendar for information on future classes and events.
View Schedule

Ascension Seton supports lifelong learning and encourages employees to seek advanced education through academic programs to enhance their skills and further Seton’s mission.

Nurses are encouraged to participate on committees that address issues such as the structure of nursing at the Clinic, quality management/continuous quality improvement, continuity of care and case management.  Active membership in professional nursing organizations is also encouraged.

Nursing Leadership Academy

The Advisory Board Company provides national-standard educational resources to support the leadership development needs of Academy member hospital unit leaders. Ascension Seton leaders have access to classroom and independent study modules focused on skills and topics that are important to success in a nursing leadership role. Through collaboration with the NLA, our nurse leaders have the opportunity to participate in courses offered across the country via the web and in person.

Tuition Reimbursement

To encourage all associates’ professional development, Ascension Seton offers $2,000 in tuition reimbursement per fiscal year. Tuition reimbursement assists employees in obtaining education or training required for their positions, and to support associate advancement. Reimbursement covers tuition, fees and books related to the education or training at an accredited institution.

Certification Reimbursement

Ascension Seton will pay for many clinical and non-clinical certifications, including the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX) review course; certifications that are not required by an individual’s profession, but are required for that associate to hold his or her current job at those that are not required, but are preferred, for the position that the associate holds at Ascension Seton. Examples would include CCRN and SPHR. Also, as recognition for our associates who take on the challenge of preferred certifications, a one time $500 recognition award will be given the first time each preferred certification is passed.

Clinical Ladder

The Nursing Clinical Ladder provides a framework for the promotion and recognition of excellence in nursing practice. The Ladder:

  • Recognizes and rewards professional nurses who choose to develop excellence in direct patient care roles
  • Fosters professional growth and satisfaction for nursing personnel
  • Promotes recruitment and retention of nursing personnel
  • Encourages nursing and research with other nurses, disciplines and institutions
  • Improves the quality of patient/family care in the Ascension Seton Family of Hospitals.

Seton’s RN Residency for Graduate and Newly Licensed RNs

Graduate and newly licensed nurses hired by Ascension Seton Family of Hospitals are provided an evidenced-based clinical, professional and personal-support system that helps new nurses transition form student to confident nursing professional.

Seton’s RN Residency includes:

  • Instructor-led courses featuring current and emerging clinical guidelines and standards
  • Clinical preceptors who provide personalized bedside training
  • Mentors who provide personal support and career development guidance
  • Debriefing sessions that offer a forum for exchange between Residents

After just 18 weeks, you will achieve the same competence and self-assurance of a nurse who has been in practice for 18 months. Read more.

Ascension Seton RN Fellowship

Ascension Seton RN Fellowship is designed to support an experienced nurse’s successful transition to a new clinical specialty practice through blended specialty classroom and online instruction, simulation, and focused preceptor support. Read more.

Partnerships with Schools of Nursing

Ascension Seton works closely with – and makes contributions to – Austin Community College, the University of Texas at Austin and others – to expand and enhance their nursing programs. Ascension Seton admits more than 1,500 student nurses in practicums, internships and other venues that enrich the professional practice of nursing in the community.

Nursing Loan Repayment Program

The Nursing Education Loan Repayment Program (NELRP) offered through the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services gives assistance to registered nurses for repayment of educational loans (60 – 85 percent of the qualifying loan balance) in exchange for service in eligible facilities located in areas experiencing a shortage of nurses. Ascension Seton RNs are eligible for this program.

Network Nursing Orientation

Ascension Seton Family of Hospitals is the largest – and still growing – hospital system in Central Texas, and our scope can be both inspiring and a little overwhelming. To help you feel comfortable and excited about your future with Ascension Seton, we provide a detailed orientation to introduce you to our many resources and help you understand the importance of your role to the team, a safe work environment and, most of all, our patients. You’ll start work on a Monday, attend New Associate Experience, and then join your new family for clinical orientation.

Clinical Orientation

Your orientation is individualized to help you understand Seton’s standards for care, quality and safety, your role and responsibilities, and how you interrelate with others on the team.

After Network Nursing Orientation, including a demonstration of your competency in medication conversions and calculations, you’ll be oriented to both your unit and specialty. You’ll be assigned a Primary Preceptor who will serve as guide through the process. Additional unit-based preceptors also will assist you through clinical orientation, focusing on competence, patient care content and unit culture.

Combined Specialty Orientation

Ascension Seton’s Combined Specialty Orientation is a collaborative nursing education effort, combining the specialties of Acute Care, Critical Care and Emergency Services. Competencies essential to all three specialties are presented primarily through simulation at the Clinical Education Center. During your orientation, you will be able to get to know nurses from other specialties and sites as you learn how Ascension Seton is different from other work environments.

Preceptor Program

The Nursing Preceptor Program at Ascension Seton supports orientation of new staff to Ascension Seton. The preceptor plays a significant role in the competency development and job satisfaction of a new staff member.

Nursing Preceptors are trained in Benner’s Novice to Expert Theory of skill acquisition as well as principles of adult learning. They address strategies to promote critical thinking, manage conflict, and give and receive feedback.

Ascension Seton offers preceptor workshops several times a year to new and experienced preceptors alike.