Higher education has been a favorite news topic for months. Stories have addressed every issue from rising costs to access for vulnerable students and completion of a college degree, to the importance of “fit” in the college selection process. President Obama and the first lady have entered the national conversation, particularly around issues of cost and graduation rates for low-income students—addressing education in the State of the Union, at White House events and in speeches across the nation. In the midst of these discussions, little attention has been paid to the role of non-elite small colleges in the higher education landscape. read more
The Fall 2013 issue of the Cleveland Clinic’s magazine Catalyst is titled “The Power of Small,” and addresses the enormous impact nanotechnology has and will continue to have on medical diagnosis and treatment. For some patients, the approach can combine diagnostics and therapies that are personalized — now termed “theranostics.”
Such innovative medical advances in nanotechnology…read more
This piece is co-authored by Dan Engelstad, Head Men’s Basketball Coach, Southern Vermont College.
Southern Vermont College’s first basketball game of the 2013 season started with a remarkable win over Williams College. Williams was in the top three in NCAA DIII preseason polls, and we had a pre-season ranking of 410 (out of 414). We called ourselves the Wrecking Crew, but our low rank was motivating, not demoralizing. Read more
What a College President Learned Teaching a High School Class: It’s About Technology, Time and What’s TestedMonday, November 18th, 2013 by Karen Gross
I recently had an opportunity to teach 9th and 10th grade students at our local high school. I wanted to re-enter the classroom for two primary reasons: the desire to understand and then strategize on improving the current misalignment between high school courses and college readiness across the nation; and a need to experience how “digital natives” use technology in the classroom and how they gather, evaluate and deploy information from the Internet. read more
As president of a college that educates nurses, this leads to an inevitable question: Might robots replace nurses, making a nursing degree a high priced luxury with limited future career options? I am not the first to ask this.
The answer, simply stated, is no; we will continue to need nurses for the coming decades and investing in a nursing degree remains a wise choice. But, the landscape for future nurses will change, and we’ll need to insure that nursing education keeps pace with the advances in the field.
Start with these facts: for students entering a nursing program in 2014 and 2015, there will be jobs when they graduate.
The combination of an aging population, the expansion of community-based health care and the retirement of nurses currently employed means there will be high demand in the coming decades.
Several other data points are worthy of mention: 1. By 2020, the need for nurses will increase by 26 percent, yielding 1.2 million job openings; 2. every state will experience an uptick but the shortage of nurses will be most intense in the South and West; 3. graduates with a bachelor’s degree in nursing are growing in preference by employers, in part because repeated studies demonstrate that there are better health care outcomes with bachelor of science in nursing prepared nurses. Opportunities for graduates with associate’s degrees are waning which is why Southern Vermont College moved from offering an associate’s degree to a bachelor’s degree in nursing.
Nurses of the future will need higher level problem-solving and complex analytic skills in addition to quality communication skills to support the psycho-social health of patients and their families within increasingly complex health systems.
More importantly, nurses will need a solid knowledge of evidence-based nursing practice combined with expert level clinical reflection skills, taking into account the human situations that impact health, illness, and recovery.