Upper Iowa University assists with nurse educator teaching requirements
Nurse educator shortage is nation-wide problem
FAYETTE, IOWA (August 13, 2007) – Through a cooperative agreement with local colleges, two nurse educator students will be able to fulfill their practical teaching experience toward their master’s in nursing education at Upper Iowa University (UIU). Pam Moss, who is in the nurse educator master’s program at Allen College in Waterloo, will student teach Nursing 360-Professional Seminar at Upper Iowa this fall. Calmar, Iowa-resident Chris Flaskerud is a student at Viterbo University in LaCrosse, Wisc. and is currently assisting with Nursing 310-Nursing Informatics at Upper Iowa.
According to UIU Associate Professor of Nursing and Director of Nursing Education Dr. Margaret Wimmer, “It is a win-win situation. For Moss, who lives in the Fayette area but works and goes to school in Waterloo, it is great to be able to fulfill this requirement so close to home.” She added, “For Upper Iowa University’s RN-BSN students, they get the benefit of an instructor who brings that day’s experience with them to the classroom.”
Moss says her life is a continual balancing act. In addition to wife, mother of three and a full-time student, she works half-time in the Allen Hospital pediatric unit and teaches four clinicals and labs at Northeast Iowa Community College. She earned her RN-BSN in 2000 from Allen College and took four years off before deciding to pursue her master’s degree. She explained, “Although I knew it would be a challenge to go back to school, I just decided teaching was still where I wanted to be.”
According to a March, 2007 report by the American Association of Colleges of Nursing, there is a nation-wide shortage of nurse educators that needs to be addressed in order to secure the future capacity of nursing needs. Wimmer says, “One of the main reasons is there is more money to be made in clinical practice than in the field of education.” Moss indicated she receives a certain percentage of federal funding toward her school loans, with the state of Iowa stepping up to pick up the balance. According to Wimmer, “I can only hope these types of incentives continue, because they are vital to the future of nursing education.”
To read more about the nation’s nurse educator shortage, go to http://www.aacn.nche.edu/Media /FactSheets/FacultyShortage.htm. For more information on Upper Iowa University’s RN-BSN or other degree programs, go to www.uiu.edu.