News & Events
January 24, 2023
Baltimore, Md. – In U.S. News & World Report’s newly released “2023 Best Online Programs” rankings, the University of Maryland School of Nursing’s (UMSON) online graduate programs ranked among the best in the nation. UMSON ranked in the top five programs nationwide among public schools of nursing in the Nursing Administration/Leadership Programs category (No. 2) and in the Nursing Education Programs category (tied at No. 3), both of which recognize the School’s Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) Health Services Leadership and Management (HSLM) specialty for its multiple focus areas. The School also ranked among the Best Online Master’s in Nursing Programs for Veterans nationwide, at No. 18 overall. The U.S. News' rankings represent the most respected and in-depth evaluation of U.S. graduate programs that are designed to be administered online. UMSON is among the 186 schools ranked, out of 580 surveyed. “I am proud and excited that we have received these outstanding rankings,” said Lori Edwards, DrPH, BSN ’80, RN, CNS-PCH, BC, assistant professor and associate dean for the Master of Science in Nursing program. “Congratulations and acknowledgments are well deserved for all of the talented faculty. They are dedicated to building future nurse leaders who become change agents and improve health care delivery. Graduates from our programs are now renowned health care system leaders, and for that we are most proud as well.” UMSON’s fully online MSN HSLM specialty offers leading-edge courses, personalized mentorship, and individual placements in practicums that support students’ career goals to refine advanced nursing leadership and nursing administration skills. Practicum placements are with leaders at hospitals and health care systems, universities and community colleges, national and state agencies, and more. Following completion of the core courses, students concentrate on one of three focus areas: Leadership and Management, Education, or Business. The Leadership and Management focus, recognized by the Nursing Administration/Leadership Programs ranking, supports students’ career goals by defining and honing the nursing leadership skills they need to succeed in a variety of health care settings and roles. The Education focus, recognized by the Nursing Education Programs ranking, creates a dual pathway to advancement, as students focus on the knowledge and skills needed to excel as a nurse leader and as a clinical instructor or faculty member. In terms of the Best Online Master’s in Nursing Programs for Veterans, the School has a long history of serving military populations. The first superintendent, Louisa Parsons, was a decorated nursing veteran of the British Army, both before and after her time at the School of Nursing. UMSON has educated nurses who have served in every major military engagement since the Spanish-American War in 1898. Today, about 1 in 12 students has served, currently serves, or is a dependent of a military veteran. Veterans and active-duty service members benefit substantially from online education that is affordable, accessible, and reputable. U.S. News’ rankings are based on indicators such as student and faculty engagement, faculty credentials and training, student services and technology, student excellence, and peer assessment, using data collected directly from each institution. Only degree-granting programs that are offered primarily online by regionally accredited institutions were considered, and the programs that score the highest are those applying educational best practices specific for distance learners. ### The University of Maryland School of Nursing, founded in 1889, is one of the oldest and largest nursing schools in the nation and is ranked among the top nursing schools nationwide. Enrolling nearly 2,100 students in its baccalaureate, master’s, and doctoral programs, the School develops leaders who shape the profession of nursing and impact the health care environment.
UMSON Selected to Participate in National Initiative to Foster Inclusive Learning Environments in Schools of Nursing
January 12, 2023
Baltimore, Md. - According to the American Association of Colleges of Nursing (AACN), inclusive learning environments and a sense of belonging are essential to the development of future nurses, and both have an impact on a nurse’s career trajectory. Students of color often have college experiences that are significantly different from most of their peers, which can lead to lower graduation rates. To help address this disparity, AACN has initiated an 18-month project titled Building a Culture of Belonging in Academic Nursing. With funding from Johnson & Johnson, AACN designed this national initiative to collect and analyze data they believe can lead to more inclusive learning environments and build a more diverse nursing workforce. Following a call for pilot schools that netted nearly 250 applicants, the University of Maryland School of Nursing (UMSON) was one of 50 schools of nursing in 28 states AACN chose to participate in the pilot. Participating pilot schools are geographically diverse and represent a range of institutional types (public and private; small and large; rural and urban, etc.). AACN chose the pilot schools based on the organization’s desire to generalize the survey process for any nursing school that may want to use this information and conduct their own culture and climate surveys. Assessing School of Nursing Climate and Culture AACN is collecting this information from the pilot schools with the goal of helping schools of nursing across the country: create environments where students, faculty, and staff of diverse races/ethnicities, gender identities, ages, sexual orientation, etc. feel strongly they belong and are encouraged to thrive improve connections among students, school, and community achieve their diversity, equity, and inclusion-related goals. To assess the experiences of diverse nursing students and identify the practices that facilitate their success, AACN developed a digital platform, which UMSON and the other pilot schools have committed to testing and using. The platform will provide nursing schools access to the AACN Leading Across Multidimensional Perspectives (LAMP©) Culture and Climate Survey and resulting action reports. The platform will allow AACN to collect data from all the pilot schools around perceptions in: fair treatment and observations of discrimination belonging value of diversity and inclusion campus services clinical training. In return for providing school-specific data, pilot schools will receive a range of support from AACN that could include programmatic support as well as institution-level assessments and action reports. AACN is driven by the idea that by developing a better understanding of how campus environments impact student success, educators can initiate change, target areas of growth, and improve student outcomes. AACN will use the data they collect to identify best practices and success strategies schools can use to improve belongingness for students and faculty, particularly those from communities of color, and they’ll disseminate these findings to schools of nursing through a variety of channels. With a clearer understanding of how campus climate influences student experiences and achievement, schools of nursing can develop plans to address concerns and issues, to embrace inclusive excellence, and to develop more inclusive academic environments. Next Steps AACN has begun providing access to the LAMP© survey and action reports. As a pilot school, UMSON can set how it wishes to administer the survey and select dates for data collection and the length of time the survey remains open. UMSON will be distributing the LAMP survey to entering and returning students, differentiating between the two groups, at the Baltimore and Universities at Shady Grove (USG) locations, and to faculty and staff at both locations at the end of January, when the spring 2023 semester begins. The survey will remain open for several weeks. Each pilot school selected a site administrator to be its point of contact with AACN and to manage the electronic distribution of surveys for the school. UMSON’s site administrator is Veronica Gutchell, DNP ’13, RN, CNS, CRNP, assistant professor and director, Wellmobile and school-based wellness programs, working in conjunction with Jeffrey Ash, EdD, chief diversity, equity, and inclusion officer at USG. “The AACN LAMP survey will provide UMSON with essential information to help us continue the work of creating a learning environment that wholly supports diversity, equity, and inclusion,” Gutchell said. “Our participation will facilitate collaborative efforts between UMSON and other schools of nursing nationwide to develop strategies to strengthen our work toward integrating diversity, equity, and inclusion in all aspects of our work and learning at the School.” After finishing each individual school report, AACN will aggregate findings and prepare a final report, which will be made available to all pilot schools and shared nationally. ### The University of Maryland School of Nursing, founded in 1889, is one of the oldest and largest nursing schools in the nation and is ranked among the top nursing schools nationwide. Enrolling nearly 2,100 students in its baccalaureate, master’s, and doctoral programs, the School develops leaders who shape the profession of nursing and impact the health care environment.
January 9, 2023
Baltimore, Md. – The University of Maryland School of Nursing (UMSON) has named Veronica Gutchell, DNP ’13, RN, CNS, CRNP, assistant professor, as director of the Governor’s Wellmobile Program. The Governor’s Wellmobile Program offers mobile, nurse-managed primary health care and has been in continuous operation under UMSON’s management since its founding in 1994. The Wellmobile provides primary health care for common chronic diseases and uncomplicated acute illnesses to underserved and uninsured individuals living in Prince George’s County. As a nurse-led primary care clinic, it serves some of the state’s most vulnerable residents. And, by helping to manage chronic disease, patients can stay healthier and need fewer services such as care in an emergency department. Since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Wellmobile has been conducting patient visits via telehealth; Gutchell envisions the Wellmobile returning to in-person visits in the coming months and expanding service in West Baltimore to better meet the needs of the local community. The Wellmobile also provides important learning opportunities for UMSON nursing students, functioning as a clinical practice site for UMSON Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) Family Nurse Practitioner specialty and Adult-Gerontology Primary Care Nurse Practitioner specialty students and for RN-to-Bachelor of Science in Nursing program students completing community health clinical rotations. Working with the Wellmobile, students learn skills in assessment, diagnosis, and management of common chronic diseases and uncomplicated acute illnesses. The Wellmobile’s health care team includes a nurse practitioner and an outreach worker. Gutchell has served as the Wellmobile’s nurse practitioner since 2013. She will continue in that role while overseeing the Wellmobile program. As part of her responsibilities, Gutchell will develop relationships with community partners to address the health care needs of the Wellmobile’s target population. These community partnerships help connect patients to the services they need and address the health care goals of selected communities. “Given Dr. Gutchell’s extensive experience as a family nurse practitioner and in-depth knowledge of the mission and operations of the Governor’s Wellmobile Program, I am confident that she will successfully lead the Wellmobile program into the future,” said Yolanda Ogbolu, PhD ’11, MS ’05, BSN ’04, CRNP-Neonatal, FNAP, FAAN, associate professor; chair, Department of Partnerships, Professional Education, and Practice; and co-director, Center for Health Equity and Outcomes Research. “I look forward to seeing activation of her ideas for innovative and new approaches to work with students and faculty on the Wellmobile to meet the needs of vulnerable populations in Maryland.” Gutchell joined the UMSON faculty in 2013. Her work has focused on employing health policy and evidence-based information to remove barriers from and expand access to advanced practice registered nursing in Maryland and nationally. She holds a Doctor of Nursing Practice from UMSON, a Master of Science in Nursing from Russell Sage College in New York, and a post-master’s Family Nurse Practitioner Certificate and a Bachelor of Science in Nursing from Binghamton University in New York. Committed to shared governance, Gutchell served for four years as chair of UMSON’s Faculty Council and is currently serving a three-year term as an UMSON representative on the University of Maryland, Baltimore (UMB) Faculty Senate. In her role as Wellmobile director, Gutchell succeeds Susan Antol, PhD, MS ’79, RN, assistant professor, who directed the Wellmobile beginning in 2009 and whose efforts were recognized by UMB with the 2017 Founders Week Award for Outstanding Public Service. During her more than 13 years as director, Antol pursued grants and new partnerships that allowed vital services to endure, including patient-centered, team-based models of care; support for interprofessional practice and education; and an interprofessional, highly collaborative joint venture between UMB and the University of Maryland, College Park to combat human trafficking. Antol remains in her UMSON faculty position and continues to guide the next generation of nurses in providing community-based care. # # # The University of Maryland School of Nursing, founded in 1889, is one of the oldest and largest nursing schools in the nation and is ranked among the top nursing schools nationwide. Enrolling nearly 2,100 students in its baccalaureate, master’s, and doctoral programs, the School develops leaders who shape the profession of nursing and impact the health care environment.
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