Welcome to our nursing and health professions students

August 29, 2013

This week, KU Medical Center's Kansas City campus moved into full swing with the official start of classes for our students in the Schools of Nursing and Health Professions. New residents and fellows began their training on July 1, and our new class of medical students has been on the Kansas City, Wichita and Salina campuses since July 22. Also getting an early start this summer were students in the nurse anesthesia, occupational therapy education and physical therapy and rehabilitation science programs. Now it's time for all of these students to welcome the rest of their nursing and health professions colleagues to the 2013-2014 academic year.

Dean Karen Miller and I are thankful for all of the students who have chosen to be educated here at KU Medical Center. It's an honor to educate the health care clinicians and leaders of the future. We have great confidence that in the years ahead they will build healthy communities and make discoveries that change the world.

Before classes got underway Monday, in between busy orientation and preparations for the new school year, more than 100 students volunteered their time for Community Service Day on August 22. First-year medical, nursing and health professions students spent a half-day working various jobs - cleanup, gardening, painting, etc., for nonprofit agencies at 14 different locations around Kansas City. The service day is part of the Student Services-sponsored Hawk Week, ushering in the new school year with daily refreshments and activities.

The School of Nursing welcomed 104 new students to the baccalaureate program last week, with orientation days packed with information and encouraging remarks from faculty, staff and deans, culminating Friday with the Nightingale Ceremony, the school's annual inauguration to the program and profession of nursing.

During the ceremony, Dean Miller told the students, their families and friends that their journey at the School of Nursing will be filled with a lot of hard work but plenty of rewards. Ours is the largest school of nursing in Kansas and counts more than 6,000 alumni in its 107-year history. The new BSN students are among an estimated 700 graduate and undergraduate students enrolled in the School of Nursing, including many nurses seeking advanced degrees at the master's and doctoral levels.

At the School of Health Professions, faculty members greeted 584 students enrolled this year in our graduate, undergraduate and certificate programs. The School of Health Professions has grown to be one of the largest health professions schools in the Midwest, in both student population and the number of programs offered. With nine departments and more than 25 academic programs, the School of Health Professions is a mix of clinical and health disciplines, ranging from cytotechnology and clinical laboratory science to dietetics and nutrition and health information management. The School of Health Professions boasts five programs in the Top 25 in of U.S. News & World Report's 2014 rankings of graduate programs.

Recently, Dean Miller told me about a note that a nursing faculty member had received from a recent graduate, who declared that her education and experience as a student here landed her a coveted slot in a nurse residency program in California. The nursing managers who interviewed her were particularly impressed with her knowledge and understanding of magnet facilities, interprofessional practice and holistic patient-centered care.

Please join me, Dean Miller and the faculty in welcoming all of our new and returning students, and for helping to ensure success in all of their academic endeavors.

Last modified: Aug 29, 2013