School of Nursing Honored as Center of Excellence

UConn is one of eight recognized by the National League for Nursing.

National League for Nursing logo.

National League for Nursing logo.

National League for Nursing logo.The UConn School of Nursing has been named a Center of Excellence by the National League for Nursing, the nation’s premier organization for nursing faculty and leaders in nursing education.

UConn was recognized for promoting the pedagogical expertise of its faculty. It is one of eight schools receiving the ‘Center of Excellence’ honor this year. The honors will be handed out at the NLN’s annual Education Summit in Orlando, Fla. on Sept. 23.

“The Center of Excellence designation is a tremendous honor,” says Anne R. Bavier, dean of the UConn nursing school. “This designation supports our firm belief that the University of Connecticut School of Nursing is one of the best nursing programs in the country. It is a highly competitive designation that recognizes the exceptional efforts that faculty in all our school’s programs make to be excellent teachers. They set the highest standards for themselves, and presented a compelling case full of illustrations and data to show their success.”

Schools may earn Center of Excellence status in one of three categories: enhancing student learning and professional development; promoting the pedagogical expertise of faculty; or enhancing the science of nursing education. Schools must also have a proven commitment to continuous quality improvement. The honor remains with the school for four years, at which time the schools are invited to apply again.

Schools that carry the COE designation are expected to serve as advisers and sounding boards to other nursing programs.

“Schools work hard to earn the coveted COE designation,” says Beverly Malone, the league’s chief executive officer. “What we seek are measurable results and best practices, and the NLN is pleased to publicly name those schools that have demonstrated their understanding of excellence in the concrete terms that the COE application demands.”

The UConn School of Nursing is Connecticut’s largest producer of new nurses. More than 80 percent of nursing school graduates remain and practice in Connecticut. The school’s researchers are advancing science and practice in such areas as pain management for the elderly and neonates, cardiac care, and post-partum depression.

Construction is under way on a new $14 million, 15,000 square-foot addition to the school’s existing space in Storrs Hall that is designed exclusively for nursing education. The Carolyn Ladd Widmer Wing will serve as the base for nursing admission and enrollment services, and will provide new classrooms and simulation laboratories allowing students to train on the latest equipment in the industry.

Adhering to its philosophy of “Proud Past, Bold Future,” the UConn School of Nursing recently adopted the nation’s new gold standard for its doctorate in nursing practice program and expanded its popular Master’s Entry into Nursing Program to three regional campuses in Waterbury, Stamford, and Avery Point. This accelerated nursing program allows non-nursing college graduates the opportunity to become a registered nurse within one year and then to earn a master’s degree in the following 18 months. It is one way UConn is helping supply Connecticut with educated, well-trained, advanced nurses to offset the nation’s ongoing nursing shortage.

The seven other schools receiving the honor this year are: Excelsior College, University of North Carolina-Greensboro, Duquesne University, East Carolina University, Regis College, Trinitas School of Nursing, and Collin College.

For more information about the UConn School of Nursing, go to