Baltimore, Md. — An innovative partnership has been initiated between the University of Maryland School of Nursing and the U.S. Army Nurse Corps (ANC) to help address the School of Nursing's faculty shortage. The pilot program calls for up to eight ANC officers to be utilized as undergraduate nursing faculty, at no cost to the School, for a maximum of two academic years. The first six ANC nurse educators will begin teaching in the fall 2007 semester. As part of the agreement, the School of Nursing will provide formal faculty orientation and training for the new ANC faculty members.
“This pilot program with the University of Maryland School of Nursing is important for three reasons,” says Maj. Gen. Gale S. Pollock, BSN '76, MBA, MHA, MS, CRNA, RN, FACHE, Acting Army Surgeon General and Commander, Army Medical Command. “First, the nursing shortage is exacerbated by a lack of faculty. In my view, Army nurses are the best in our military and we can help address that national faculty shortage. Second, these Army nurses will be role models for student nurses who want to serve with the best, so it will assist us with recruiting. Third, many of the nurses in the ANC want to teach and serve as faculty; therefore, an option like this helps me retain these excellent nurses as well.”
“Faculty shortages across the nation are limiting student capacity,” says Janet D. Allan, PhD, RN, CS, FAAN, Dean of the School of Nursing. “This mutually beneficial program will help us tackle our faculty shortage, allow us to continue educating large numbers of undergraduate students, and help the Army enhance officer training. It is a win-win situation for both parties.”
The School of Nursing has a long history of preparing military nurses, having graduated more than 1,000 military nurses over many decades. Many of the graduates were members of the Walter Reed Army Institute of Nursing program, launched by the School in 1964, and from which Maj. Gen. Pollock graduated in 1976.
“We need to empower men and women to consider nursing by providing them with the education and the resources they need to do their jobs. It's essential for our hospitals and it's essential for our patients,” says Sen. Barbara A. Mikulski (D-Md.), a long-time champion of nursing. “This relationship between the U.S. Army and the School of Nursing demonstrates the importance of our nurses and nurse educators to the military and to the nation as a whole. I'm so proud of the University of Maryland School of Nursing for once again showing creativity and vision in establishing this world-class program.”