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Nebraska AG Sues Bellevue Over Nursing Program

Nebraska's attorney general this week filed a complaint alleging that Bellevue University made false or misleading statements to prospective and current students about the accreditation status of its bachelor of science in nursing program, which is aimed at registered nurses who are interested in earning bachelor's degrees. The program initially did not hold specialized accreditation. But the private university used deceptive marketing to create confusion about that fact, alleged Doug Peterson, the attorney general.

"Students from Nebraska and elsewhere relied on Bellevue University’s misleading statements, incurred student debt or lost their hard-earned money as a result, and were left with unaccredited degrees and worthless credit hours as a result," Peterson's office said in a written statement. Roughly 179 students attended the program during the five-year period covered by the complaint.

The university said in a written statement that the program is currently accredited by the Commission for Collegiate Nursing Education. That specialized accreditation became effective in 2017, after the period covered by the complaint.

"Bellevue University categorically denies the allegations that we misled or would mislead any student and we intend to defend this matter vigorously," said the university. "CCNE specialized accreditation ensures the quality and integrity of baccalaureate, graduate and residency programs in nursing. It is an additional program accreditation separate from and in addition to the university’s institutional accreditation through the Higher Learning Commission."

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