Heather M. Young: A commitment to interprofessional education
Welcome to the new UC Davis Health magazine and this section dedicated to our future alumni of the Betty Irene Moore School of Nursing at UC Davis. The evolution of the magazine reflects UC Davis Health System's commitment to interprofessional education, research, health care and community involvement.
I am pleased to share highlights of the school's progress as part of these integrated endeavors. I look forward to sharing in future editions of UC Davis Health the many exciting advances in nursing education and research, here at UC Davis Health System and beyond.
It is especially fitting that the debut of this interprofessional publication coincides with the application process for the inaugural classes of the Nursing Science and Health-Care Leadership Graduate Group, which offers interdisciplinary Master of Science and Doctor of Philosophy degrees.
The timing of this new educational opportunity is ideal. The need for improvement in health and health care has never been more apparent and nurses can, and should, be part of the solutions to the complex issues our society faces in assuring both access and quality in health care and to improving the health of our population.
We have embarked on a course to advance health and ignite leadership through innovative education, transformative research and bold system change. Our aspirations are made possible by the unprecedented public-private partnership of UC Davis with the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation and its $100 million commitment in support of the school's launch, as well as your ongoing help and encouragement. Much has happened over the past year in preparation for our first students. I am pleased to share with you our progress to date:
- In March 2009, the University of California Board of Regents approved the establishment of the Betty Irene Moore School of Nursing, paving the way for other UC systemwide approvals, including the final systemwide approval of the school's graduate education program in February 2010.
- Over the past year, we hosted a number of town-hall style meetings to collect input and suggestions from local residents, community leaders, area nurses and nursing faculty, nurse leaders from across the nation and others interested in the new school and how nursing education will contribute toward and lead the transformation of health care. We are incorporating the participants' creative ideas about the nurse of the future, delivering care in systems that are more responsive, accessible, efficient and effective; and preparing nurse leaders to guide the necessary system change toward that preferred future.
- The feedback we collected was useful in the development of our graduate programs and led to the formation of the Nursing Science and Health-Care Leadership Graduate Group, which will confer both the Doctor of Philosophy and Master of Science degrees.
- We initiated our search for the founding faculty and in September began the interview process for visionary, highly qualified individuals who will develop the school's innovative interdisciplinary and interprofessional curriculum and build our research portfolio. They will join the 27 faculty from across campus who are part of the Nursing Science and Health-Care Leadership Graduate Group. On March 1, Elena Siegel was appointed assistant professor to the Betty Irene Moore School of Nursing, and we anticipate welcoming at least two additional nursing professors this year.
- Three new postdoctoral fellows – Dian Baker, Ph.D., A.P.R.N.-B.C., P.N.P., R.N.; Debra Bakerjian, Ph.D., F.N.P, R.N.; and Samira Jones, Ph.D., M.P.H. – were appointed last fall, joining our founding postdoctoral fellow, Tara Sharpp, Ph.D., R.N. The postdoctoral scholars will conduct interdisciplinary research in community health, health policy, gerontology and rural health and will contribute to the development of our curriculum and building our research program.
- We have received notification of the awards for our first two research grants. One project will study the impact of nurse-led intervention of pain self-management for people who had spinal surgery. The other project will test the effectiveness of nurses as health coaches to improve health for people with diabetes in rural and underserved regions.
- We engaged CO Architects to work with us on a design plan for a new facility to house the majority of the school's faculty, administrative staff and student facilities, while sharing classrooms, lecture halls and other features with students from other disciplines. Our collective design priorities are to create a learning environment that fosters connection, creativity, collaboration and community; promotes sustainability and health; and is future-oriented and innovative. We are excited about the preliminary concepts and will share more with you in the coming months.
- Applications are open through May 31 for the inaugural Master of Science and Doctor of Philosophy classes for the Nursing Science and Health-Care Leadership program. I look forward to future issues of UC Davis Health magazine when we introduce our inaugural classes and, later, our first alumni!
Spring / Summer 2010
UC Davis Health System is proud to be home to medical, nursing, family nurse practitioner / physician assistant, public health and health informatics students and to also be the internship site for pharmacy, nutrition and other programs. Improving the health of our communities requires that we bring together these perspectives, and UC Davis is well positioned to do so.