The mission of the School of Nursing is to educate, enhance and enrich students for evolving professional nursing practice.
The School of Nursing values the following as fundamentals:
- Integrity: Purposeful decision to consistently demonstrate truth and honesty.
- Excellence: Highest quality of nursing education, practice, service and research.
- Diversity: Respect for varied dimensions of individuality among populations
- Service: Professional experiences in response to the needs of society.
- Learning: Acquisition of knowledge and skills in critical thinking, practical reasoning, and decision making.
- Student Centered: Development of essential skills for lifelong learning, leadership, professionalism, and social responsibility.
The faculty holds the following beliefs about personhood, environment, health, nursing and nursing education. We believe that each person has innate worth and individuality, which reflects integration of the bio-psycho-social-spiritual nature of one’s being. Though each is unique, all persons possess characteristics that form the bases of identifiable shared basic human needs. We believe that individual experience, heredity, and culture influence each person, and that one’s existence depends on perception of and reaction to change. Inherent in this process is the capacity to make decisions, weigh alternatives, predict and accept possible outcomes.
The faculty believes that environment profoundly influences all persons. The environment is the sum of all conditions and forces that affect a person’s ability to pursue the highest possible quality of life. The concept of environment has two major components. The first comprises society and culture, which derive from the need for order, meaning, and human affiliation. The second component consists of the physical and biological forces with which all human beings come in contact. Both of these components of environment are sources of stimuli that require personal adaptation and/or interaction in order for individuals to survive, develop, grow, and mature.
The faculty believes that health is a state of wholeness and integrity. We recognize that health is not a static state for individuals, families, groups, or communities, but that it is a continuum in which the mind, body and spirit are balanced, providing a sense of well -being. Health is influenced by the ability to cope with life processes. The achievement of this potential is determined by motivation, knowledge, ability, and developmental status. The faculty also believes the primary responsibility for one’s health rests with the individual or those upon whom one is dependent.
We believe that each individual has the right to quality health care. The goal of health care is to promote, maintain, or restore an optimal level of wellness. Nurses act as advocates in assisting persons to gain access to and secure maximum benefit from the health care system. The complexity of health care requires that nurses as professionals collaborate to provide the highest level of health care possible.
The faculty believes that nursing is both art and science. This unique altruistic discipline has evolved from the study and application of its own interventions as well as applying knowledge from a variety of other disciplines. The focus of nursing is the provision of care across the health care continuum utilizing a systematic nursing process.
We believe that nursing refines its practice in response to societal need, and that nursing education must prepare a professional nurse for evolving as well as traditional roles. The faculty recognizes the obligation of the nursing curriculum to include leadership, change strategies, professionalism and community service
We believe that the education of nurses occurs at several levels in order to prepare various categories of practitioners. To acquire the knowledge and judgment inherent in practice, nursing education focuses on critical thinking, decision-making, analysis, inquiry, and research. The faculty also believes that learning is an independent, life-long process. Learning is an opportunity for teacher-student interaction in setting goals, selecting and evaluating learning experiences and appraising learners’ progress. All levels of nursing education share certain rights, duties, and characteristics, such as the scientific basis of nursing care. Accordingly, we actively support the endeavors of the profession to assist nurses in pursuing professional education at beginning and advanced levels.
The purpose of the associate level is to prepare graduates who apply the nursing process in the provision of direct nursing care for clients with common, well-defined problems. Therefore, the associate curriculum is grounded in the liberal arts and includes professional values, core competencies, core knowledge and role development. The associate degree graduate is prepared to function as a member of the profession and a manager of care in acute and community based settings.
The nurse prepared at the baccalaureate level is a professional who has acquired a well-delineated and broad knowledge base for practice. We believe that the role of a baccalaureate graduate is multifaceted and developed through extensive study in the areas of liberal education, professional values, core competencies, core knowledge and role development. This knowledge base prepares the beginning baccalaureate graduate to function as, a provider of direct and indirect care to individuals, families, groups, communities and populations. The baccalaureate graduate is also a member of the profession and a designer, manager and coordinator of care.
The master’s level prepares baccalaureate nurses for advanced nursing practice roles. Preparation for advanced practice emphasizes strategies to intervene in multidimensional situations. The knowledge base is expanded in scope and depth through the scientific, theoretical and research components of nursing. Various theories inherent in advanced practice roles and strategies are analyzed and explored to synthesize the interdependence of theory, practice, and scientific inquiry in nursing. This synthesis of knowledge and experience provides the basis for creating, testing, predicting, and utilizing varied and complex interventions for problems of health care and health care delivery. The graduate of the master’s program is a leader in the profession and prepared as an independent coordinator of care.