Baylor’s Louise Herrington School of Nursing Receives Five-year Renewal of U.S. Army Graduate Program in Anesthesia Nursing

February 28, 2023

LHSON Contact: Whitney Cortner, Baylor Louise Herrington School of Nursing, Dallas, 972-576-9117
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DALLAS, Texas (Feb. 28, 2023) – The Baylor University Louise Herrington School of Nursing (LHSON) has received a five-year renewal of its program in cooperation with the United States Army Graduate Program in Anesthesia Nursing (USAGPAN).

The program – which operates at the U.S. Army Medical Center of Excellence (MEDCoE) at Joint Base San Antonio, Fort Sam Houston, Texas – educates and prepares individuals to become independent Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetists (CRNAs). Upon graduation, Army CRNAs will serve a minimum of five years as Officers in the Army Nurse Corps, with the option to stay in and continue to serve while increasing in rank and salary as well as function as respected members of the military health care team.

Several VA Nurses are admitted with each USAGPAN Cohort and return to serve as CRNAs in the Veterans Administration health care system. Baylor’s USAGPAN CRNAs provide full-spectrum anesthesia in their respective Army and VA hospitals across the continental United States, with Army CRNAs serving anywhere in the world they are needed.

“We are delighted that the U.S. Army Training and Doctrine Command has awarded Baylor University a five-year renewal of our national affiliation agreement for the U.S. Army DNP Program in Nurse Anesthesia,” said Linda Plank, Ph.D., RN, dean of Baylor’s Louise Herrington School of Nursing. “For more than 65 years, Baylor has been honored to serve our country through health-related educational programs, like USAGPAN, in partnership with MEDCoE. Such military graduate programs are compatible with Baylor’s long heritage in preparing students for professional education in medicine, nursing, dentistry, nutrition, physical therapy, occupational therapy and other allied-health professions.”

Several LHSON programs are ranked by U.S. News & World Report in its 2023 Best Graduate Schools report, including the Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) program at No. 60 nationally. U.S. News also included LHSON in its “Best Nursing” specialty rankings, with LHSON’s USAGPAN at No. 8 nationally, and Baylor’s Nurse-Midwifery program at No. 21 in the nation. 

The LHSON serves as the degree-granting institution for USAGPAN that resides with the Army’s USAGPAN Program Director, Col. Steven S. Kertes, DNP, CRNA, and Baylor clinical associate professor.

“We look forward to our continued collaboration with the Baylor University Louise Herrington School of Nursing. Baylor has a long-standing commitment to the U.S. Army Graduate Programs at the MEDCoE. Our partnership and merging of resources and initiatives sustains the USAGPAN to remain one of the top nursing anesthesia programs in the nation,” Kertes said.

Students in the U.S. Army Graduate Program in Anesthesia Nursing are educated in a manner that encourages independent thought and critical decision-making skills during times of great stress, both physical and emotional. As the sole providers of anesthesia under many circumstances in the Army, CRNAs need to rely on their skills and training to save the lives of those in their care.

The success rate for the 2022 USAGPAN class of graduates is reflected in a 100% pass rate for first-time test-takers on the National Certification Exam (NCE) offered through the National Board of Certification and Recertification for Nurse Anesthetists (NBCRNA). In addition, the 2022 class had a 100% employment rate.

The U.S. Army and Baylor University boast a long and proud heritage in health-related graduate education. Currently, there are 10 Army-Baylor programs in the Baylor Graduate School that include:

To learn more about USAGPAN at Baylor visit the LHSON website, or contact Jana Johns, Program Coordinator,


Baylor University is a private Christian University and a nationally ranked Research 1 institution. The University provides a vibrant campus community for more than 20,000 students by blending interdisciplinary research with an international reputation for educational excellence and a faculty commitment to teaching and scholarship. Chartered in 1845 by the Republic of Texas through the efforts of Baptist pioneers, Baylor is the oldest continually operating University in Texas. Located in Waco, Baylor welcomes students from all 50 states and more than 100 countries to study a broad range of degrees among its 12 nationally recognized academic divisions.


The Baylor University Louise Herrington School of Nursing (LHSON) located in Dallas, Texas, was established in 1909 as a diploma program within Baylor Hospital in Dallas, which is now Baylor Scott & White Health’s Baylor University Medical Center, and in 1950 became one of the six degree-granting schools of Baylor University. The first Baccalaureate degrees were granted in 1952, establishing the School among the earliest baccalaureate nursing programs in Texas. In 1999, the School was renamed the Baylor University Louise Herrington School of Nursing after Louise Herrington Ornelas, a 1992 Baylor Alumna Honoris Causa, who made an endowment gift to the School. The LHSON offers Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) degrees through Traditional, FastBacc® (one-year accelerated) and Distance Accelerated BSN programs. Plus, the LHSON offers an online Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) program with tracks that include Family Nurse Practitioner, Nurse-Midwifery, Neonatal Nurse Practitioner, Pediatric Nurse Practitioner, Adult Gerontology Acute Care Nurse Practitioner, Executive Nurse Leadership and U.S. Army Anesthesia Nursing (USAGPAN). U.S. News & World Report’s 2023 Best Undergraduate Nursing Programs ranked the LHSON No. 39. In addition, the U.S. News 2023 Best Graduate Schools rankings list several LHSON programs, including the DNP program at No. 60 nationally and “Best Nursing” specialty rankings for LHSON’s USAGPAN, which operates at the U.S. Army Medical Center of Excellence at Fort Sam Houston in San Antonio, at No. 8 nationally, and Baylor’s Nurse-Midwifery program, which is No. 21 in the nation. To learn more, visit

*The baccalaureate degree program in nursing and Doctor of Nursing Practice program at Baylor University are accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education, 655 K Street, NW, Suite 750, Washington, DC 20001, 202-887-6791.

*The Baylor University LHSON DNP program is accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education.

The USAGPAN program is accredited by the Council on Accreditation of Nurse Anesthesia Educational Programs (COA) for the maximum allowable 10 years through October 2031.