Nursing Education and University Partnership

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 How University Partnership Helpful In Nursing Education

Nursing Education and University Partnership

What is University Partnership Definition,Implementation of University Participation In Nursing Education,Outcomes of University Participation In Nursing Education,Impact of University Partnership.

What is University Partnership Definition

    University partnerships are formed among colleges, universities, and their local communities (Office of University Partnerships, 2014). These partnerships can assist communities in addressing local problems and providing students with learning opportunities and a mechanism for the development of community awareness. There are seven categories of university partnerships: service learning, service provision, faculty involvement, student volunteerism, community in the classroom, applied research, and major institutional change (Martin & Smith, 2005).

Implementation of University Participation In Nursing Education

    Each of the categories has distinct applications in nursing education. Service learning involves students in activities in the community as part of their regular coursework. At Auburn University, the School of Nursing partnered with the Early Head Start Program as part of the pre-licensure (bachelor of science in nursing [BSN]) nursing students' childbearing course to provide services to teenage mothers and to develop community service knowledge of nursing of vulnerable populations (Bentley & Ellison, 2005).

    Service provisions are long-term coordinated projects involving a specific component of the community (Martin & Smith,2005). The University of Akron School of Nursing opened its Nursing Center for Community Health in 1982. This center provides non-emergency, episodic, primary care service to the university community as well as the under served and vulnerable populations in the local community. It provides clinical education for undergraduate and graduate nursing students, medical students, residents, and other health professionals; it also helps generate and share clinical research (The University of Akron School of Nursing, 2014).

Faculty involvement initiatives are projects in which a faculty member is the driving force behind a community activity or initiative (Martin & Smith, 2005). An example of a faculty involvement project is that of a monthly BP clinic at an outreach center for the community supported by the college. The faculty worked with the city health department to determine the high risk population in the area and invited students to participate in the faculty-managed screening clinic.

    Student volunteerism includes voluntary activities that students participate in who are not in any course of instruction (Martin & Smith, 2005). A program at the Massachusetts College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences provides physician assistants and pharmacy and nursing students the opportunity to volunteer at a Head Start Preschool in southern New Hampshire (Gallagher, Cooper, & Durand, 2010).

    Community in the classroom is an activity to enhance community growth and education (Martin & Smith, 2005). At the East Tennessee State University School, students developed and delivered a community-based employee wellness program for a rural county school district as one of the course requirements (Florence & Behringer, 2011).

    Applied research involves students and faculty in data collection and analysis (Martin & Smith, 2005). At the Harris College of Nursing of Texas Christian University, undergraduate nursing students who were bilingual and bicu-ltural served as data collectors with Spanish speaking cancer care-givers in a research project investigating cultural beliefs that influenced care giving behaviors (Wells & Cagle, 2009 ).

    Major organizational change is needed in order to foster more community and university engagement (Martin & Smith, 2005). Strategic planning at Lorain County Community College (LCCC) involves a 100-member team comprised of external community and regional stakeholders, faculty staff, and students (Mission, Vision, and Values, 2014). The resulting strategic planning process formed the University Center, which provides 40 bachelor and master degree academic partnership programs based on the needs of the local community. 

    One of these was for a registered nurse (RN) BSN completion program. The University of Akron provides this program on-site as a 3+ 1 program with the associate degree nursing (ADN) program of LCCC, providing more than $40,000 in tuition savings compared to the traditional pre-licensure BSN program by offering all general education courses for the ADN and BSN through LCCC at the community college tuition rate (The University Partnership, 2014).

Outcomes of University Participation In Nursing Education

    There are seven types of university partnerships (Martin & Smith, 2005). Service learning engages students in activities in the community as part of a specific course. Service provision is a continuous project involving a specific component of the community, which provides learning experiences for students. Faculty involvement is an initiative in which a faculty member is participating and invites students to participate. Student volunteerism is an activity in which students participate that is not part of any course or requirement. 

    Community in the classroom is a project developed to improve the community as part of a specific course requirement. Applied research utilizes faculty and students in data collection and analysis in community-related research. Major institutional change is accomplished for the purpose of bettering the community the college or university is serving. Furthermore, students were found to have increased community awareness based on the partnership experience (Gallagher et al., 2010).

Impact of University Partnership

    Nursing education programs have had close working partnerships with local communities in the form of clinical affiliations; however, nursing educators need to expand the partnerships within the framework of university partnership models. Numerous research studies have been carried out to validate the benefits of these university partnership activities for students including personal outcomes, such as personal efficacy, spiritual growth, moral development, and leadership and communication skills; social outcomes, such as cultural sensitivity, social responsibility, citizenship, commitment to service, and volunteerism; learning outcomes, such as academic learning, application to practice, and critical thinking, career development, and a stronger relationship with faculty (Eyler, Giles, Stenson, & Gray, 2001).

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