Nursing dean delivers State of the College address

Dr. Lucy N. Marion, Dean of the Georgia Regents University College of Nursing, gave her annual State of the College Address Friday. Marion spoke to an audience of faculty, students, staff, and hospital and university administration about the college’s growth and impact in nursing education, including research, scholarship, and service. Highlights include:

– As the College of Nursing enters its 8th decade, administrative leadership and program directors are working to fulfill the college’s vision: to be a top-tier college of nursing recognized for excellence, innovation, and transformation of health care through discovery and evidence-based education and practice.

-The CON counts among its faculty 57 full-time nurse educators, 13 part-time educators with a clinical focus, 113 “occasional” faculty, and approximately 350 preceptors. “Occasional” faculty represent a new and quickly growing path in professional nursing careers for educator clinicians.

– Enrollment for 2014 is 809, with 555 students in Augusta and 211 students in Athens. The remainder study in Columbus or online.

– The CON has one of the country’s Top 100 Nursing Programs in Graduate nursing, On-line education, and Nursing Anesthesia. It’s home to Georgia’s only Nursing Anesthesia Program, Master’s-entry Clinical Nurse Leader Program, an accelerated degree for non-nurses, and BSN to DNP options.

– By 2016, the academic structure will be streamlined with simple and straightforward degree paths: BSN, MSN/CNL, Doctor of Nursing Practice, and Doctor of Philosophy.

– GR Nursing Associates includes 18 faculty at 14 practice sites leading to faculty salary supplements. Faculty are engaged in scholarly practice and service. Programs like Healthy Grandparents provide monthly support groups and health and wellness events for grandparents raising grandchildren without a parent in the home.

– The college has several stand-out faculty members, including Dr. Amber McCall, who was awarded the 2014 Didactic Novice Faculty Teaching Award by the American Association of Colleges of Nursing.

– The Department of BioBehavioral Nursing is making a difference in communities with primary care practice emphasis on family, child, and mental health. Research includes community-based participatory and faith-based methods, new educational delivery models including video, obesity, diabetes, and lifestyle change, and health pregnancies.

– Physiological and Technical Nursing in Augusta and Athens provides high-tech care with research into chronic stress and inflammatory response in trauma; cardiovascular translational research; and mindfulness, as well as other areas.

– A new Office of Assessment and Development spearheaded by Dr. Annette Bourgault will focus on employee advancement, individual and focus group assessments, coordinating resources, expanding training and support, enhancing onboarding programs, and a new mentoring program.

– The CON’s Diversity and Inclusion initiative includes outreach and engagement with GRU Equality as a “Come Out for Health” Week sponsor; Hispanic and Black Nurses national associations, and educational partnerships with Spelman, Agnes Scott, and Paine Colleges.

– At GRU, the CON is preparing for its 8th decade with investments in the future, including a new generation of faculty, increased partnerships, new technologies, and joint degree programs.