Message from the College of Nursing Dean: Winter 2019

Wednesday, December 4, 2019

As this is my last formal communication with you as dean, I would like to reflect on what we have accomplished together over the past five years of my tenure.

In U.S. News & World Report rankings, we moved from 16th to 8th for best MSN schools, from 5th to 2nd for best DNP schools, from 11th to 4th for best online nursing programs, and all of our specialty programs are ranked in the top ten this year. Our student diversity for underrepresented minority groups in nursing has increased from 24% to 32%, pushing us closer to our goal of educating nurses that are reflective of the communities we serve. Our research funding has doubled totaling $2 million in 2019. In the Blue Ridge Research rankings, we moved from 56th to 35th in NIH funding. Our Office of Faculty Practice has grown to include 27 community partners, 58,000 clinical service hours, and 17,000 student clinical hours.

All of these accomplishments demonstrate that our College is strong and leads the country in innovative nursing education that directly impacts the quality of care that our graduates provide to patients. And the College will continue to be in good hands; I am pleased to share three new nursing leadership appointments:

  • Mary Zonsius, PhD, RN has assumed the position of Assistant Dean of Evaluation as Rose Suhayda, PhD, RN prepares for retirement.
  • Susan Buchholz, PhD, RN, FAAN, FAANP will assume the role of Acting Chairperson for the Department of Adult Health and Gerontological Nursing on January 1, 2019.
  • Most crucially, I am pleased to share the appointment of Barbara Swanson, PhD, RN, FAAN, ACRN, as acting dean of the College of Nursing effective January 1, 2020. Dr. Swanson is the assistant dean of nursing science studies and a professor of Adult Health and Gerontological Nursing. She earned her doctorate from Rush College of Nursing and she completed postdoctoral studies in immunology at Rush University Graduate College.
  • Dr. Swanson will be responsible for the mission of the College of Nursing, including the clinical, teaching and research activities of the faculty. She will have leadership authority including recruitment and financial management. The College is lucky to have Dr. Swanson in this role while the national search for a permanent dean is underway.

Also in recent news, I am excited to share that the College of Nursing has partnered with the Chicago Department of Public Health for Family Connects Chicago – a pilot program that will provide free in-home visits with a registered nurse for families with newborns. Nurses from the Rush University Office of Faculty Practice will conduct a health assessment of both mother and baby, provide education on newborn care, and assess any other needs of the family. You can read more about this exciting new service in the Chicago Tribune or the Rush InPerson blog.

I hope you enjoy the news and announcements in this edition of News & Views. I wish you all a wonderful holiday season and hope to stay in touch at Rush alumni events.

For those who follow me on Twitter, know that I will keep my eye on your amazing accomplishments in the future. And because of you, I will forever be #DeanProud.

Marquis D. Foreman, PhD, RN, FAAN
John L. and Helen Kellogg Dean of Nursing