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Stories from Soundings: Van Loan Continues to Grow

Professor teaches students in a lab setting
With adult learners in mind, the Van Loan School at Endicott College is on the cutting edge of providing students with the most relevant, up-to-date programs that are both convenient and innovative.

With adult learners in mind, the Van Loan School at Endicott College is on the cutting edge of providing students with the most relevant, up-to-date programs that are both convenient and innovative. 

The past year has been busy at Van Loan with the addition of a Master of Science in Bioinformatics, RN to BSN at Beverly Hospital, Autism and Applied Behavior Analysis Fifth Year, undergraduate integrative health concentration, and cybersecurity certificate.


The bioinformatics master’s program leverages the Life Sciences Consortium of the North Shore’s—which includes Endicott College—$5 million grant. Each group within the consortium received a designated amount to build a lab, and Endicott went with a state-of-the-art sequencing center.

Bioinformatics is a key stakeholder in sequencing thanks to code that is used to automate looking through DNA or protein data.

“Boston and the surrounding communities form the biotech capital of the world,” says Justin Topp, assistant dean of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics. “We’re now really appreciating how computers can help us analyze biology. Biology is really complicated, so the more we can model the better. Bioinformatics gets you in the front door for that. You learn how to code, you learn how to use some of the more common programs, but then you also get the biological understanding of what the data means.”

Courses are offered in a hybrid, part-time format over two years, and the program involves 11 classes—eight core, two electives, and one internship or thesis. 

RN to BSN at Beverly Hospital 

The undergraduate nursing program added Beverly Hospital to its RN to BSN off-site locations, joining the Lahey Clinic in Burlington, Mass., and Lawrence General Hospital. The program is also available on campus in Beverly, Mass.

In just 16 months, RNs complete their bachelor’s degree, obtaining skills to excel in the ever-changing field of healthcare. A cohesive co-taught model promotes peer interaction and support, and no clinical is required.

B.S. in Nursing (RN to BSN)

Undergraduate Integrative Health 

Integrative health practitioners are increasingly being viewed as partners in wellness who significantly enhance their clients’ healing process. This undergraduate-level concentration is aimed at alternative health professionals looking to enhance their skills to communicate effectively with doctors, nurses, and psychologists.

Students learn critical thinking skills, how to run a business and leverage networking opportunities, and are coached on speaking with clients.

Concentration in Integrative Health

Autism and ABA Fifth Year 

In addition to the ABA Fifth Year, the Van Loan School now offers the Autism and ABA Fifth Year for those aiming to become a behavior analyst specializing in autism.

Students take a variety of courses that are required to become a Board Certified Behavior Analyst (BCBA), developing a skill set in the science and application of ABA to individuals with autism spectrum disorder (ASD).  

Cybersecurity Certificate 

With more than 350,000 jobs currently available in cybersecurity nationwide, the opportunities are endless for those seeking a lucrative career in the field. In addition to the cybersecurity concentration for the Master of Science in Homeland Security Studies program, a four-course, 12-credit certificate is  now offered.

Taught by expert faculty—with real-world experience fighting cyber-attacks—from DHS, FBI, and military branches, the certificate program prepares students for the CompTIA Security+ exam and covers the fee.

Certificate in Cybersecurity

This article is featured in the Winter 2019 edition of Soundings, the Endicott College magazine that highlights happenings in our community such as academic program enhancements, alumni spotlights, student successes, campus news, sports highlights, faculty accolades, and community successes.