September 26, 2017
Welcome to the 2017-18 academic year!
Welcome — and for many, welcome back — to the 2017-18 academic year. I hope everyone had a pleasant summer that included fun and relaxation, as well as work.
Whether you are a new nursing student or finishing your doctoral degree, this will be an important year in your educational career. I encourage you to embrace it, use it well, and benefit from it in every way possible through not only formal courses but also the many extracurricular options (educational and social) that will be on offer throughout the year.
We encourage School of Nursing students to engage with the world, even though it is not always the world we might wish it to be. Please know that this campus and this School are deeply and irrevocably committed to core values that revolve around diversity, equity, and inclusion. You are safe here. You are welcome here. You are important here. And you have a very important role to play in making our School community safe and welcoming for others.
Please commit to taking care of one another this year. Be kind. Be patient. Be inclusive. Be humble. These shared efforts and attitudes will make you better nurses.
There is much to be excited about as we begin this year. You will all be spending time in our new simulation center. The center is the product of a private/public partnership for which we are very grateful. With strong support from our state representatives, we were allocated more than $4 million in state funds for construction. This was complemented by substantial private philanthropy that provided for the new equipment that will greatly expand not only our sim lab capacity, but also its capabilities. As with almost everything that is accomplished at the SoN, this was very much a team effort, and I thank everyone who was involved — students, staff, faculty and external donors and supporters.
It is with both pleasure and enthusiasm that I welcome to our team Dr. Anne Hirsch, the new Associate Dean for Academic Affairs, and Dr. Butch de Castro the new Associate Dean for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion. These are two deeply dedicated, caring, and capable people who will have a major impact on your student career and thus on your professional career. Their commitment to social justice and equity, their extensive experience as educators, and their excellent people skills will all prove an invaluable addition this year and far beyond.
Please make use of the many resources that are available for any personal, academic, or other assistance you might want or need. We understand that being a nursing student is demanding, stressful, and sometimes overwhelming. That’s why we have put in place many sources of assistance. The faculty and staff want everyone to succeed, and we will do everything we can to help. Your success is our success.
This is your year. The academic year that begins now has unlimited promise. I’m excited about the possibilities it holds for each of you, and look forward to hearing of your successes.