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In 1967, Old Dominion University graduated its first two students with nursing degrees. In 2007, the School of Nursing celebrates 40 years of graduating thousands of nurses from its prestigious program -- more than 4,000 to date -- armed with the skills to provide quality health care.

The School of Nursing will be honoring its alumni, friends, health and community partners at the event "Celebrating 40 Years of Excellence In Nursing Education 1967-2007" Saturday, Oct. 20 in Norfolk.

The field of nursing has evolved over the last 40 years, with new technologies and breakthroughs - even a nursing shortage that is predicted through the next 20 years. Couple the shortage with the scarcity of nursing faculty and one can envision the picture of the ever-changing landscape of nursing.

The Nursing School at ODU has grown with the changes in the industry and continues to adapt to the changing landscape.

"Nurses are more important than ever before," said Richardean Benjamin, chair of the School of Nursing at ODU. "There are more opportunities now for students who are choosing this career," Benjamin said. "With the nursing shortage, one can almost be guaranteed a position upon graduation."

The School of Nursing currently offers two professional degrees: the Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) and the Master of Science in Nursing (MSN). But plans are in the works for the school to offer a new degree: the Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) upon approval of the Board of Visitors.

Housed in the newly renovated Health Sciences Building located on Hampton Blvd, the school is equipped with state of the art equipment, educational models, a health assessment laboratory and mediated classrooms that enhance the learning experiences of nursing majors.

The school is on the cutting edge with its use of computer-based virtual patients and $160,000 of simulator equipment. New, state-of-the-art assessment and skills labs help nursing students to hone their nursing skills in a setting representative of actual practice settings.

Clinical practice sites throughout the Hampton Roads area augment the practice component of undergraduate nursing education and include general, specialty, public, private, military and community health care facilities. The graduate program has clinical practice sites throughout the Commonwealth of Virginia and the nation.
The alumni, friends, health and community partners to be honored during the event are listed below.

Health Care Partners

Sentara Health System-Dr. Lois Kerscher, Genemarie McGee, Kathy Webb, Peggy J. Braun* , Darlene Anderson*
Bon Secours Hampton Roads Health System-Tom Sweeny, Theresa Nero,
Bobbie Butler *
Children's Hospital of the King's Daughters-Jo-Ann L. Burke *, Dr. Linda Grasmick,
Karen Horton
Chesapeake Regional Medical Center-Elaine Griffiths
Riverside Rehabilitation Institute-Anne Moffatt
Naval Medical Center - Portsmouth - Rear Admiral Thomas R. Cullison, CAPT. Jamie Carroll*, LCDR Catherine Riley
Atlantic Anesthesia - Dr. Thomas Rich
DePaul Anesthesia - Dr. George Lin
Renaissance Pediatrics - Jennifer McMurray *
Consortium for Infant and Child Health (CINCH) Dr. Fran Butterfoss, Amy Paulson
Eastern Virginia Medical School, The Theresa A. Thomas Professional Skills Teaching and Assessment Center - Gayle Gliva-McConvey
Martha Jefferson Hospital, Charlottesville - Sue Winslow

Commonwealth of Virginia Partners

Governor Timothy Kaine
Department of Health and Human Services Secretary Marilyn Tavenner
Virginia Board of Nursing - Dr. Paula Saxby
Virginia State Senate - Senator Yvonne Miller
Virginia Community College System - Dr. Monty E. Sullivan

Community Partners

TOWN Foundation - Jordan Levitin
Lake Taylor Foundation - Eleanor Bradshaw
Med Emporium - Audrey Webster
Laerdal Corporation - Sturgis Kidder

University Partners

Distance Learning - Dr. Nancy Cooley, Dr. Edie Barnett, Dr. Robert Curry
Office of Computing and Communication Services - Rusty Waterfield
School of Nursing Advisory Board - Sonnie Winslett, Chair

Individuals - Dr. Janet Azar, Phyllis Barham*, Helen Bernd*, Sandra Breeden,
Dr. Linda Davis* **, Dr. Christine Elnitsky*, Dr. David Hager, Jim Hosack*, Dr. Linda Lilley*, Dr. Christine Mueller*, Dr. Brenda Nichols **, Patti Pishioneri, June Ritchie, Faye Sims*, Judy Wessell, Dr. Helen Yura

* School of Nursing Alumni
** Former Department Chair

This article was posted on: October 16, 2007

Old Dominion University
Office of University Relations

Room 100 Koch Hall Norfolk, Virginia 23529-0018
Telephone: 757-683-3114

Old Dominion University is an equal opportunity, affirmative action institution.