School of Nursing

February 1, 2022

Reflecting on Black History Month

During February, we honor Black History Month, a time to acknowledge the achievements of Black Americans and their important roles that have shaped our country’s history.

It’s an appropriate time to also reflect on the history of Black nurses in America and the stories of influential people who broke barriers and opened paths for future generations.

We celebrate Estelle Massey Osbourne, the first Black nurse in history to earn a master’s degree and the first Black faculty member of New York University. She was a trailblazer for Black nurses in higher education and leadership roles.

We remember nursing leader and educator Dr. Bernadine Lacey, who served as the founding dean of the School of Nursing at Western Michigan University. She was an advocate to include care for the underserved in the nursing curriculum to better prepare future nurses to care for the most vulnerable in our society.

At the School of Nursing, we honor all the amazing contributions of Black nurses in advancing the nursing profession – not just today but every day. From our very own Husky Nurses, like Dr. Jessica Iwuoha DNP ’20, BSN ’14 to nursing leaders like Dr. Beverly Malone, President and CEO of the National League for Nursing.

Please join me in celebrating Black History Month and learning more about how we can be better allies to support, advocate, and uplift Black nurses.