In an effort to boost the number of instructors qualified to serve as nursing faculty members, SJSU and Fresno State will soon begin planning a joint doctor of nursing practice program (DNP). The program will be launched as early as fall 2012, pending approval by the CSU Board of Trustees at their meeting Jan. 25 and 26.

“The Valley Foundation School of Nursing at San Jose State University is well-positioned for a transformational change in education for professional nurses to practice at the most advanced levels,” said Jayne Cohen, director of SJSU’s nursing school. “The doctorate in nursing practice will enable its graduates to be at the forefront of implementing research, resulting in the safest, highest quality care yielding the best patient care outcomes. Health care reform will offer limitless possibilities for nurses in advanced practice roles to contribute to a more effective and efficient health care delivery system by providing new and expanded nursing care to patient populations.”

“In addition, this new program will vastly add to the cadre of nursing faculty, well-qualified to educate new nursing professionals,” Cohen continued. “Without a well-prepared and educated nursing faculty, we will be unable to educate an adequate number of nurses to meet the expected dramatic increase in our population and their concurrent health care needs. The time is right, the time is now. SJSU is the perfect place.”

The U.S. Bureau of Health Professionals projects California will have a shortfall of more than 100,000 nurses in ten years. A key challenge to closing this projected shortfall has been a limited number of slots available in California nursing programs, which is tied to a limited number of individuals qualified to serve as nursing faculty.

The SJSU/Fresno State program in the north is one of three such efforts. Fullerton, Long Beach and Los Angeles will plan a similar program in the south. San Diego will develop a stand-alone program. The DNP will build on the CSU faculty expertise and campus resources based in existing nursing departments.

Read a related CSU news release.

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