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News Around the School

VUSN receives federal grants to increase and equip FNPs in rural, underserved areas

  Vanderbilt University School of Nursing received two awards totaling more than $5 million from the U.S. Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) to increase the number of nurse practitioners working in rural and underserved communities where there aren’t enough primary care providers. In response to the growing need for mental health services, both awarded…

Posted in Departments, Fall 2019, Issue, News Around the School, Vanderbilt Nurse News |


Alumni and faculty honored as fellows by AAN, AANP and ACNM

Twelve faculty and alumni of Vanderbilt University School of Nursing have been named fellows by the American Academy of Nursing (AAN), American Association of Nurse Practitioners (AANP) and American College of Nurse-Midwives (ACNM). Faculty members Pam Orebaugh Jones, DNP’13, MSN’92, BSN’81; April Kapu, DNP’13, MSN’05; and Jennifer Ezell Wilbeck, DNP, PMC’06, MSN’99; and alumni Kuei-Ru…

Posted in Departments, Fall 2019, Issue, News Around the School, Vanderbilt Nurse News |


School of Nursing designated Center of Excellence

The National League for Nursing has named Vanderbilt University School of Nursing an NLN Center of Excellence in recognition of its high standards of educational excellence and visionary leadership. The NLN is the nation’s foremost organization for nursing faculty and leaders in nursing education. Designation as a COE signifies that a nursing school has achieved…

Posted in Departments, Fall 2019, Issue, News Around the School, Vanderbilt Nurse News |


Phillippi to head Nurse-Midwifery specialty

  Julia Phillippi, PhD, MSN’99, CNM, FACNM, FAAN, assistant professor of Nursing, has been named academic director of Vanderbilt University School of Nursing’s Nurse-Midwifery program. She will also co-direct the Nurse-Midwifery/Family Nurse Practitioner dual-focus specialty with FNP Academic Director Courtney Pitts, DNP. The Nurse-Midwifery specialty is one of the school’s most competitive programs and is…

Posted in Departments, Fall 2019, Issue, News Around the School, Vanderbilt Nurse News |


Mariann Piano named to International Nurse Researcher Hall of Fame

  Mariann R. Piano, PhD, FAAN, FAHA, Senior Associate Dean for Research at Vanderbilt University School of Nursing, was inducted into the International Nurse Researcher Hall of Fame by Sigma Theta Tau International (STTI) during its 30th International Nursing Research Congress in July. Induction into the Hall of Fame is considered one of the highest…

Posted in Departments, Fall 2019, Issue, News Around the School, Vanderbilt Nurse News |


Graduates inspire optimism about health care’s future

  The School of Nursing presented degrees to more than 400 graduates during Commencement and investiture ceremonies on May 10. The class included 348 MSN and 56 DNP graduates. An additional five PhD in Nursing Science graduates were honored in separate Vanderbilt Graduate School ceremonies. Dean Linda D. Norman, DSN, FAAN, told the 2019 graduating…

Posted in Departments, Fall 2019, Issue, News Around the School, Vanderbilt Nurse News |


Atrium dedicated to former dean Colleen Conway-Welch

  The atrium in the new $23.6 million Vanderbilt University School of Nursing building has been named after former dean Colleen Conway-Welch, PhD, FAAN, FACNM, who served as dean for 29 years and is credited with transforming nursing education at Vanderbilt and nationally. The Colleen Conway-Welch Atrium serves as the main entrance to the school…

Posted in Departments, Fall 2019, Issue, News Around the School, Vanderbilt Nurse News |


Welcome New Faculty

Debra Arnow, DNP’11, MSN’96, NE-BC Associate Professor Arnow has more than 25 years in nursing leadership and clinical nursing expertise. As Senior Vice President and Chief Nursing Officer for Children’s Hospital and Medical Center in Omaha, Nebraska, she oversaw that facility’s American Nurse Credentialing Center Magnet recognition. Her executive expertise includes clinical outcomes, operations, financial…

Posted in Departments, Fall 2019, Features, Issue, News Around the School, Vanderbilt Nurse News |


Selected Works 2018

JOURNALS Richardson L, Adams S. Cognitive deficits in patients with depression. Journal for Nurse Practitioners. July 2018;14:437-443. Adams S, Rice MJ, Jones SL, Herzog E, Mackenzie LJ, Oleck LG. Telemental health: Standards, reimbursement and interstate practice. Journal of the American Psychiatric Nurses Association. July 2018;24(4):295-305. Akard TF, Duffy M, Hord A, Randall A, Sanders A,…

Posted in Departments, Fall 2019, Features, Issue, News Around the School, Vanderbilt Nurse News |


Vanderbilt nurses for life

What inspires 14 busy nursing professionals to dedicate hours of their valuable free time to their alma mater? From organizing networking events to honoring outstanding fellow alumni, the Vanderbilt University School of Nursing Alumni Board helps connect graduates back to the school. Meet your alumni board and learn what they want you to know about…

Posted in Departments, Fall 2019, Features, Issue, News Around the School, Vanderbilt Nurse News |


Vanderbilt again named best school for men in nursing

The American Association for Men in Nursing has again recognized Vanderbilt University School of Nursing as a best school for men in the nursing profession. In informing the school of the honor, the AAMN wrote that VUSN “easily meets the qualifications to be deemed a 2019 Best School for Men in Nursing.” AAMN recognition must…

Posted in Departments, Fall 2019, Issue, News Around the School, Vanderbilt Nurse News |


VUSN mourns mental health advocate, forensic pioneer and professor Joyce Laben

  Tennessee inmates with mental illness owe a debt of gratitude to Professor of Nursing, Emerita, Joyce Laben, JD, MSN, FAAN. It was her pioneering work as director of forensic services for the Tennessee Department of Mental Health in the 1970s that instigated procedures for them to be evaluated and treated in a humanly and…

Posted in Departments, Fall 2019, Issue, News Around the School, Vanderbilt Nurse News |


Currently Funded Grants and Contracts

Research Grants Susie Adams Integrated Addiction Medicine Project Meharry Medical College Health Resources and Services Administration 7/1/19–6/30/24 $213,937 Terrah Akard Chancellor’s Faculty Fellow Vanderbilt University 7/1/19–6/30/21 $80,000 Terri Allison DNP Nurse Practitioner Outcomes and Workforce Implications American Association of Nurse Practitioners 9/26/18–12/31/19 $3,000 Leanne M. Boehm Discovery Grant Vanderbilt University 7/1/19–6/30/21 $100,000 Leanne M. Boehm…

Posted in Departments, Fall 2019, Features, Issue, News Around the School |


Nursing and medical students team up to vaccinate Nashville’s needy

Refugee children, people without health insurance and Nashville’s homeless were among 756 people who received free flu vaccines through an extensive Shade Tree Clinic vaccine outreach program coordinated by a School of Nursing student and two Vanderbilt University School of Medicine students. Psychiatric-Mental Health Nurse Practitioner student and Milah P. Lynn Scholar Lexa Taylor, RN,…

Posted in Departments, Issue, News Around the School, Spring 2019, Vanderbilt Nurse News |


New BSN-to-DNP pilot begins in August

Vanderbilt University School of Nursing is launching a pilot BSN-to-DNP program that gives registered nurses with Bachelor of Science in Nursing degrees the ability to earn the Doctor of Nursing Practice degree in only eight semesters. The program will integrate the advanced practice courses typically associated with the master’s-level nursing degree with DNP courses. The…

Posted in Departments, Issue, News, News Around the School, Spring 2019, Vanderbilt Nurse News |


Etherington inducted into Tennessee Health Care Hall of Fame

Associate Professor of Nursing Emerita Carol Etherington, MSN’75, FAAN, has been inducted into the Tennessee Health Care Hall of Fame in recognition of her contributions to health and health care. Etherington’s work has focused on traumatized populations, and designing and administering programs to address health and mental health needs of individuals, families and communities impacted…

Posted in Departments, Issue, News, News Around the School, Spring 2019, Vanderbilt Nurse News |


New alumni awards increase awareness and diverse accomplishments

The School of Nursing Alumni Association recognized eight alumni and friends of the school with its Distinguished Alumni Awards during Reunion 2018. Honorees were nominated by fellow alumni and colleagues and selected by the association’s board of directors. The awards this year included new categories and honors. The expanded categories allowed the association to recognize…

Posted in Departments, Issue, News Around the School, Spring 2019, Vanderbilt Nurse News |


Best nursing school for men

The American Association for Men in Nursing (AAMN) has named Vanderbilt University School of Nursing an AAMN Best School of Nursing. The honor recognizes a nursing school for significant efforts in recruiting and retaining men in the nursing profession. In informing VUSN of the honor, the AAMN noted that its recognition review committee was very…

Posted in Departments, Issue, News Around the School, Spring 2019, Vanderbilt Nurse News |


School of Nursing rises to Top 10 in U.S. News & World Report rankings

In the U.S. News & World Report annual rankings of graduate nursing programs released in March, Vanderbilt University School of Nursing rose to the No. 5 rank for its Doctor of Nursing Practice program and to No. 8 for its Master of Science in Nursing program. Those positions are the highest rankings VUSN has received…

Posted in Departments, Issue, News Around the School, Spring 2019, Vanderbilt Nurse News |


Dean’s Message

Dear alumni, colleagues and supporters: The cover of Vanderbilt Nurse beautifully captures the combination of the Collegiate Gothic style of Godchaux Hall with the contemporary glass expanse of our new four-story atrium. Together they form the entrance to the new School of Nursing building, which opened with great celebration on Jan. 22. It is a…

Posted in Dean's Column, Dean's Letter, Issue, News Around the School, Spring 2019, Vanderbilt Nurse News |



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