RCC Nursing Alums: Register for access to the Alumni Directory and Blog of the experiences of RCC Alums going on for further education and moving into the nurse-educator role. Contribute your lessons learned on our Blog, and let us know how the website could be more useful to you and other alums.
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This website and related activities were initiated through the vision and committment of the RCC's former Dean for Nursing & Allied Health, JoAnn Mulready-Shick. It was completed with the generous support of the Massachusetts Board of Higher Education to RCC Nursing Future Faculty Networking Project grant.
Welcome to the Roxbury Community College Department of Nursing’s, Future Faculty Networking Project: An Initiative to Increase the number of Nursing Faculty from Diverse Backgrounds. We have developed this project because there is a glaring disparity in representation of nurses from diverse backgrounds with advanced education practicing as nurse educators. Not only is the profession facing a critical shortage of nurses but there is also a stagnant number of nurses enrolling in higher education to prepare themselves for the nurse educator role.
The Future Faculty Networking Project is evidence-based and can be considered a best practice. This project focuses on bringing greater numbers of minority graduates into higher education, by partnering with surrounding universities with whom RCC articulates, to prepare future nursing faculty via support and mentoring from RCC nursing alum who are currently enrolled or whom have graduated from these educational institutions and are now practicing in faculty roles. RCC Nursing Department will support and mentor these alum in the nursing faculty role by possibly providing them positions either as lab assistants, or lab or clinical faculty, while they are returning to school for formal coursework.
This project provides an innovative approach to developing future faculty. Large numbers of RCC graduates found themselves learning within a supportive academic environment where they represented the majority racial and ethnic identities while attending their pre-licensure program here at RCC. Upon returning to school for undergraduate and graduate level nursing education that will no longer the case. The literature describes feelings of isolation and loneliness when students from diverse ethnic and racial backgrounds find themselves in the minority. This status is often is described as a contributing factor in student attrition. Nursing research and higher education research studies point to the importance of social support networks for students from minority backgrounds in academic success. A support network can provide them with knowledge, advice, and mentoring from those who have already navigated these waters, which may prove helpful, improve retention, and add to numbers of Massachusetts nursing faculty from diverse backgrounds.
RCC is uniquely positioned to not only continue to significantly contribute to increasing the diversity of the workforce in the state of Massachusetts but to also play an important role in encouraging its graduates to return to higher education to prepare for advanced roles such as nursing faculty. This college graduates the largest percentage of nursing students from diverse racial and ethnic backgrounds in the commonwealth. Many graduates state a desire to pursue higher education for careers in teaching, advanced practice, and research. However, many are constrained by economics and must choose to first find employment rather than continue directly on to undergraduate and graduate nursing programs. This project will help to identify and highlight particularly supportive and caring institutions.
David Becker, MS, RN
Dean for Nursing & Allied Health