| USD Nursing
of baccalaureate programming.
The R.N.-B.S.N. program began in the fall of 2011 with 32
students. The demand for the program, largely from USD’s own
associate degree graduates, exceeded all expectations and served as
a catalyst to increase enrollment for the second cohort.
In 2013, USD Nursing will admit its first cohort into
the four-year baccalaureate degree. The move will significantly
help meet the B.S.N. workforce demands within South Dakota
and achieve the Institute of Medicine’s call for 80 percent
baccalaureate prepared nurses. Even so, USD Nursing continues
its commitment to provide multiple options for nursing
education. The future of health care will depend largely upon
interprofessional collaboration, and it will be vital for nurses to
carry an in-depth understanding of the roles of other disciplines in
the health care team.
To this end, the department is taking steps to provide
students with opportunities to learn together through simulation
experiences with medicine and other health disciplines in the
School of Health Sciences (physical therapy, occupational
therapy, dental hygiene and social work, physician assistants).
Collaborative educational efforts, such as those being developed
and implemented at USD, will be critical in helping nursing
students learn how to communicate with other disciplines in
delivery of health care across settings and situations.
Through the coming decades, ensuring patients receive high
quality care will require nurses to be full partners with physicians
that provide leadership with other health professionals. USD
Nursing’s proud tradition of excellence, along with its vision
for the coming years, set the bar for interprofessional, quality
education, preparing graduates to become leaders in health care. •
provided a supportive learning environment that made a USD
Nursing degree even more accessible to certified nursing assistants
and other ELGSS employees in their home communities. In 2010,
a Department of Labor (DOL) grant helped further expand the
distance efforts in the online environment. These efforts have
expanded the capabilities for online pedagogies and student
learning opportunities to all of USD Nursing’s students regardless
National League for Nursing (NLN)
Center of Excellence
In 2004, the USD’s Nursing Program was one of three
charter schools to earn the Center of Excellence designation by
the NLN. The program earned continuing designation in 2007
and again in 2010 for creating environments that enhance student
learning and professional development.
Present and Future
In 2011 the Board of Regents approved the implementation
of the online R.N.-B.S.N. program. This program admitted its
first cohort in fall 2011, which will graduate December 2012.
At present, USD Nursing has 44 core faculty members who
serve in three traditional academic roles: teaching, service and
scholarship. The program’s faculty and staff provide instructional
services to over 650 students. Responding to economic
changes, Carla Dieter, Ed.D., R.N., F.N.P-B.C., chair of the
Department of Nursing, who began her tenure in late 2011, has
begun restructuring and reorganizing to increase efficiency and
effectiveness while positioning the program to meet the future
demands of its graduates. This process has begun with the addition