CSU–Pueblo offers graduate nursing education courses this summer

The Master of Science in Nursing program at Colorado State University – Pueblo is offering courses in its nursing education emphasis to help meet a critical need for nursing educators in southeastern Colorado. The graduate program, which currently offers emphasis areas for nurse practitioners, clinical nurse specialist, and nurse educators, received full accreditation from the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission last July.

Nursing students at CSU-Pueblo may take courses this summer to obtain a master’s degree with an emphasis in nursing education. The curriculum includes 45 credit hours that may be completed over four semesters. The CSU-Pueblo MS Educator program is the only public program in southeastern Colorado

According to the Colorado Center for Nursing Education (2003), Colorado’s current education infrastructure is inadequate and unable to meet the predicted 31 percent increase in nurses needed by 2020. A major factor is the deficit in qualified nurse educators.
(See http://www.coloradonursingcenter.org/Downloads/PDF/issuesbrief.pdf.) Testimony before the U.S. House Education and Workforce Committee (2005) indicated that while nursing programs are expanding, many qualified applicants are turned away due to an insufficient number of faculty.

“Colorado’s shortage of qualified nursing faculty at its two year nursing schools is three times the national average, and nearly double the national average at its four year schools,” said Lynn Dierker, director for community initiatives with the Colorado Health Institute.

Students also may elect to take a post master’s certificate in nursing education, or limit their student to the education courses that will assist them in meeting the Colorado Board of Nursing requirements for nurse educators. Summer 2007 classes run from May 14 through August 2. Nursing education courses offered during summer 2007 are: Nursing 575: Curriculum Development, (2 credit hours), Nursing 576: Teaching and Instruction in Nursing, (4), and Nursing 571: Healthcare Informatics, (3). Courses will include both class room work and on-line learning activities. All three courses are offered on Thursdays. Students may apply as a guest student this summer. However, these courses will count towards the master’s degree if a student later enters the master’s program.

Dr. Mary Kontz, RN, Associate Dean for Nursing, said it has initiated two other mechanisms to meet local and regional faculty shortages. First, a faculty sharing program has been developed with Pueblo Community College department of nursing to meet the local need for specialty faculty in psychiatric and obstetric nursing and to set a precedent for collaborative educational partnerships in nursing education.  Under leadership of faculty member Cathy Coram MS, RN, the department has initiated a mobile Clinical Educator Seminar to facilitate development of local and regional clinical faculty.

Interested students should call the nursing department, 549-2815, and request Dr. Barbara Sabo, Graduate Program Coordinator.

Colorado State University - Pueblo is a regional, comprehensive university emphasizing professional, career-oriented, and applied programs. Displaying excellence in teaching, celebrating diversity, and engaging in service and outreach, CSU-Pueblo is distinguished by access, opportunity, and the overall quality of services provided to its students.