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Department of Community, Systems and Mental Health Nursing

Chairperson: Kathryn Swartwout, PhD, APN, FNP-BC

The mission of this department is to meet the holistic health needs of a diverse society through high quality programs and leadership in nursing education, research and practice.

One of our department goals is to explore innovative ways to engage students for advising, mentoring and recruitment into graduate and post-graduate nursing programs. We are proud to offer the first all-online graduate program developed by the college: psychiatric-mental health nursing, with an innovative online supervision component. The Advanced Public Health Nursing graduate program is also online.
Our community health nursing programs include family nurse practitioner (FNP) and advanced public health nursing. Graduates from any of our programs can sit for certification and licensure.

Research and practice are the foundation of our faculty scholarship. Faculty have grants from the National Institutes of Health as principal investigators and co-investigators for several studies, including the following:

  • Chronic grief intervention for Alzheimer's caregivers
  • Expert nursing interventions for decreasing aggression among psychiatric in-patients
  • Understanding predictors of re-hospitalization in depressed patients
  • School- and community-based intervention for improving mental health in Mexican-American immigrant families

In addition, we have contracts with numerous community health agencies, where our practice faculty deliver comprehensive health care to underserved populations. Our faculty are nationally recognized leaders in their specialty organizations. Our combined research and practice strength serves as a base for our educational efforts across all levels of the curriculum.