A Note From Dean Swanson

At the start of 2021, after nearly a year waiting for COVID vaccines to become available, Seattle University was presented a unique opportunity to collaborate with Swedish and to be part of the global effort to vaccinate every person, one-arm-at-a-time.

Between January 12 and February 26, a volunteer workforce consisting of 1,238 of volunteers from across the university joined in the effort to make this clinic a success.

I am particularly proud that Dr. Renee Rassilyer-Bomers, a key leader in launching this project, earned her baccalaureate, masters, and doctoral degrees in Nursing from Seattle U. She models the leadership one might expect of a graduate of our Health Systems Leader Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) program.

On January 29, when the freezer failed at Kaiser Permanente Kaiser Permanente, leaving 1,650 doses of the vaccine at risk of expiring, volunteers mobilized and got the clinic up and running with less than an hours’ notice. Between 11 p.m. and 2:30 a.m. Seattle U College of Nursing faculty, staff and student volunteers helped vaccinate 880 community members (some still wearing bathrobe and slippers). Not a single precious dose was lost. Considering the clinic had a 99% volunteer workforce, it speaks strongly to what happens when there is a well-executed playbook. Dr. Rassilyer-Bomer and team’s prior planning and on-site orchestration enabled each volunteer to experience self as part of a larger good—Magis-in-action.

It is bittersweet to witness the doors of Campion Hall’s clinic coming to a close. The Swedish COVID-19 Clinic at Seattle U was responsible for administering approximately 48,000 total vaccine doses to community members. With the state focusing more on mass vaccination sites, the Swedish Community COVID-19 Vaccination Clinic at Seattle U serves as a scalable model for those larger efforts. Having developed and trialed an efficient community-focused vaccination distribution plan, our vaccination partnership will continue to benefit many more Washington state residents.

Hard to believe that SU Gives our annual 24-hour giving event is almost here. On Thursday, February 25, alumni, students, parents, friends, staff, and faculty will come together for this online event to invest in the success of our current and future students.

I invite you to join me in contributing to the Student Emergency Fund. This year, thanks to the generosity of our donors, if the College of Nursing receives at least 50 online gifts of any size on Thursday, it will unlock $10,000 for our Student Emergency Fund. This fund provides financial assistance to College of Nursing students who are unable to meet immediate, essential expenses because of temporary hardships related to an emergency or crisis.

No gift is too small, every dollar raised enhances our mission of educating and inspiring leaders to transform health care for a just and humane world.