A Note From Dean Swanson

Written by Kristen M. Swanson, RN, PhD, FAAN | Dean and Professor

As graduation and awards season gets well underway at Seattle University, in the College of Nursing we have had many reasons to recognize achievements and celebrate significant beginnings.

Each June, we welcome new graduate nursing students to the College of Nursing. This year is a bit different, for it marks the beginning of the academic journey of our first class of immersion students and Registered Nurses entering directly into the Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) program. Registered Nurses entering the program this June are on track to complete their DNP studies in three years. The immersion students will spend their first year in an intensive pre-licensure course of study, which will prepare them to take the NCLEX. As newly licensed Registered Nurses, they will continue to pursue their DNP through three years of advanced practice studies.

As of July 1, 2017, faculty, staff, and students of the Diagnostic Ultrasound (DIUS) program at Seattle University will become part of the College of Nursing. The DIUS program has been serving undergraduates interested in health profession careers since its founding at Seattle University in 1978. This new partnership creates opportunities to explore potential collaboration across disciplines and make more choices available within the College of Nursing for students seeking degrees in health professions.

I’m very excited to welcome the faculty, staff, and students from the DIUS program as they join us this summer, as well as the DNP classes of 2020 and 2021!

As I read through the articles included in this newsletter, I’m struck by a common thread that runs through many of the stories, specifically; I see a desire to care for others, but more than that, to amplify ways to make a lasting difference. 

Two of our undergraduates, Steven Pasek and Eleanore O’Neill, received Rosemary Ford Future of Oncology Nursing Scholarships from the Seattle Cancer Care Alliance this year. Both of them told stories of periods in their lives when they were in crises and having been supported and cared for by nurses during those times. These experiences shaped their decisions to pursue a career in oncology nursing.

A hand of support and care extended in a time of need is profound. Its effects are both immediate and enduring. At the College of Nursing, I’ve seen this time and time again. It’s present in the mentoring our faculty offer our students, in the support our staff members offer to those on the academic journey, and, most gratifying, making caring a lifelong goal, shows up in the determination of our students and graduates.

At commencement in June, I look forward to seeing many of our students, 80 undergraduates and 18 graduate students, walk across the stage to accept their diplomas. Even more of our students, 70 undergraduate and 35 graduate students, are anticipated to follow them in August.

Linda Mathison, a longtime staff member of the college, has often commented how meaningful it is for her knowing that the support she shares with our students is magnified through the care they will provide to so many people in need.

I want to recognize and celebrate the positive impact that has been and is still yet to be made by all College of Nursing students, faculty, staff, and alums. Each and every one of us is part of that thread of care. And it is clear to me that we were brought here together in this time and place for a common reason: Tikkun Olam (Repair the World).


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