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New Associate Dean for Research Named at RUSH University College of Nursing

New Associate Dean for Research Named at RUSH University College of Nursing

Barbara Swanson, PhD, RN, FAAN, ACRN, has been tapped as the new associate dean for research at RUSH University College of Nursing. As associate dean, Swanson directs research activities across the College and mentors nursing researchers as part of the College’s strategic emphasis in this area. Swanson assumed the role July 1.

Swanson has been an influential leader at the College of Nursing for many years. Before the associate dean appointment, she was the chair of the Department of Adult Health and Gerontological Nursing and was acting dean during the national search for a permanent one. Swanson also served as the director of the PhD in nursing science for 13 years, helping it to coalesce as a leading program for nurses and other health care providers who wish to become clinical researchers and have the skills and expertise to advance nursing care through scientific discovery.

“Dr. Swanson’s prolific career as an exceptional educator and advocate for nursing science made her uniquely positioned to move into this role,” said Christine Kennedy, PhD, RN, FAAN, the John L. and Helen Kellogg Dean at the College of Nursing. “I am confident that with Dr. Swanson at the helm, the research endeavors of the College will flourish.”

In addition to her numerous leadership roles, Swanson has had a robust research career with numerous grants and publications advancing the care of patients, focusing on clinical care and working with people living with HIV since 1987. In 2016, Swanson was named an associate editor for the Journal of the Association of Nurses in AIDS Care. Today, much of Swanson’s research is focused on the ability of marine oils to control inflammation and immune senescence in people with HIV/AIDS.

“I am excited to advance the research at the College of Nursing to its next level,” Swanson said. “The nursing scientists at the College offer solutions through the development of new scientific knowledge that can help individuals, families and communities thrive. I am grateful to Dr. JoEllen Wilbur for all she has done to advocate for nursing research during her time as the associate dean for research these past 15 years.”

Todd Rupar, PhD, RN, GCNS-BC, FAHA, FAAN, took over as the PhD program director from Swanson, also effective July 1.

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