Grant Provides Path to Nursing for American Indian Students at Cal State San Marcos

Grant Provides Path to Nursing for American Indian Students at Cal State San Marcos

Five American Indian students are attending the California State University (Cal State) San Marcos School of Nursing through a recently awarded grant called Graduating American Indians into Nursing (GAIN). The grant covers tuition, books, fees, and a stipend of $1,500 per month for each student.

Dr. Deborah Morton, an assistant professor of public health and co-principal investigator on the grant identified the potential students for the program. Dr. Denise Boren, co-principal investigator and director of the Cal State San Marcos School of Nursing will step down from her director role at the end of the academic year to focus on grants and more direct involvement with GAIN students.

Dr. Boren tells “Nurses spend so much time with patients. It’s really important to have nurses who understand the American Indian culture.” This is one of the reasons for the grant, helping provide American Indian students with a path to pursue a nursing degree and improve healthcare for American Indians as these students graduate into the profession. Dr. Morton also commented on the benefits of the grant: “We have a nursing shortage in California and we have more American Indians than any other state. It was a great opportunity for us.”

One of the requirements of the grant is that students spend an equal amount of time working in an Indian Health Service clinic upon graduation as a form of scholarship payback. This means committing three years of their time after graduation, which aligns perfectly with grant goal of helping improve healthcare for American Indians.

To learn more the GAIN grant and the American Indian recipients pursuing nursing degrees at Cal State San Marcos, visit here.

Loma Linda University School of Nursing Seeks Early-Career PhD Candidates

Loma Linda University School of Nursing Seeks Early-Career PhD Candidates

After two years of improvements to their nursing program, including distance learning and enhanced flexibility, the Loma Linda University School of Nursing is seeking an early-career cohort of PhD applications. The nursing school is looking for applicants in their 20s and 30s to output a greater number of nurses who can sustain a longer career in nursing research they are passionate about.

Ellen D’Errico, PhD, RN, NEA-BC, an associate professor who oversees the PhD program tells, “Our graduates get to further their career as health care leaders or get involved in academia as researchers, faculty, and developing the next generation of nurses, which many people find exhilarating and rewarding.”

The university spent two years retooling the PhD program after examining how to best serve potential students, including lessening demand for face-to-face only teaching methods. New doctoral candidates will only be required to spend a few days on campus per quarter, and more distance learning options are in the works for future students. Program administrators hope the revised PhD program will appeal to a larger pool of qualified applicants who want a flexible program that will allow them to work as nurse scientists, leaders, and faculty after completing their degree.

Two PhD nursing programs are offered: Master’s Entry PhD and Post-Baccalaureate PhD. For more information on Loma Linda University’s PhD nursing programs, visit here.

Virtual Nurse App Receives $8 Million from Investors, Including Mayo Clinic

Virtual Nurse App Receives $8 Million from Investors, Including Mayo Clinic, a San Francisco startup that has created a virtual nursing app to help physicians stay in touch with their patients and prevent readmission to the hospital, has recently raised $8 million from investors in its most recent round of venture funding. The new funding from investors like the Mayo Clinic will be used to bring the virtual nurse technology to a wide array of clinics and patients.

Designed for both patients and healthcare professionals, the app asks patients to tell the nurse avatar how they are doing by simply talking through a 5-minute “check in.” Patient check-ins are then stored as medical records that only authorized physicians can view. The medical reports also include device data that the app pulls from medical devices and wearables (like Fitbits or Apple watches) that patients use day-to-day.

Using artificial intelligence,’s nurse avatar speaks to patients in empathetic tones about their healthcare concerns, and uses emotional analysis to alert a patient’s care provider when the app detects that a patient is in need of mental health counseling or feeling symptoms of depression or anxiety as a side effect of medications or lifestyle changes.

The app is designed around commonly accepted medical protocols for diagnosis and treatment of chronic illnesses. So far, the company has focused on patients 60 and older who are suffering from health problems like COPD, heart failure, diabetes, and other age-related issues. But ultimately they want the app to work for people from all age groups and populations dealing with a variety of health issues. They are improving their analysis capabilities by adding new protocols and content from partner hospitals and clinics.

Adam Odessky, Chief Executive Officer and founder of, believes in the platform’s potential help people live longer and healthier lives and make quality healthcare more affordable and available. When asked if virtual nurses might “steal” jobs from human nurses in a discussion with, Odessky says no: “There aren’t people doing this job already…This is a technology to help medical professionals do their jobs more effectively, and not one that threatens their livelihood.”

To learn more about this new virtual nurse platform, visit or

University of California, Irvine Announces Newly Approved Sue & Bill Gross School of Nursing

University of California, Irvine Announces Newly Approved Sue & Bill Gross School of Nursing

After recent approval from the University of California Board of Regents, the University of California, Irvine (UCI) has announced their new Sue & Bill Gross School of Nursing. UCI’s nursing school is now the fourth nursing school in the UC system and their newly achieved school status is well deserved as the nursing program celebrates 10 years of educating future nurses.

The nursing school’s founding dean, Adeline Nyamathi, says their new prestigious school status will enable the nursing program to move strongly toward its vision which largely involves expanding nurse-managed community clinics. UCI Chancellor Howard Gillman told the, “The campus has long desired to have our nursing program become a school. A terrific combination of public and private support will ensure a top-quality education for many more talented students – and enable us to hire nursing field leaders to train them – to help fill the pipeline of prepared healthcare professionals.”

Establishing the UCI nursing school was made possible by a $40 million gift from the William and Sue Gross Family Foundation which is the largest gift in UCI history. Thanks to their generous donation, UCI will be able to construct a state-of-the-art nursing building to increase classroom size and research space. Official plans for the new building haven’t been announced by the school hopes to break ground in the next couple of years.

UCI’s School of Nursing offers bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral degree programs. To learn more about Sue and Bill gross, and their contributions to UCI’s nursing program, visit here.

Alumna Donates $7 Million to California State University, LA to Name School of Nursing

Alumna Donates $7 Million to California State University, LA to Name School of Nursing

California State University, Los Angeles (Cal State LA) recently received a $7 million gift to name the Patricia A. Chin School of Nursing and establish the Chin Family Institute for Nursing. Dr. Patricia Chin became a strong supporter of the university after earning her bachelor’s and master’s degrees from the university in 1980 and 1984 respectively. She later served as director of the Cal State LA School of Nursing and was named emerita faculty upon her retirement.

The Chins’ made their donation to endow the Chin Family Institute for Nursing and create a state-of-the-art nursing simulation lab in the Rongxiang Xu College of Health and Human Services. Dr. Chin’s husband, William Chin, also maintains a career in the healthcare field as a founding partner and executive medical director for HealthCare Partners, LLC.

Dr. Patricia Chin told, “As US healthcare evolves to improve the quality and access to patients and reduce the waste in our healthcare system, it is nursing that will be the catalyst for this change.” Cal State LA is grateful for the Chins’ donation which will enable the university to continue their national leadership in nursing education. The support from a successful alumna and former faculty member will help prepare current and future students for success in the fields of nursing and healthcare.

To read more about the Chin’s donation and Cal State LA’s Schools of Nursing and Health and Human Services, visit here.

UCLA School of Nursing Names Linda Sarna New Dean

UCLA School of Nursing Names Linda Sarna New Dean

The University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) School of Nursing has appointed Linda Sarna to serve as their new dean. Sarna is an internationally recognized scholar in promoting the role of nursing in tobacco control and oncology research focused on patients with lung cancer.

After serving as interim dean since March 2015, and acting dean from July 2014 to March 2015, she will become the school’s 7th dean effective November 15. Sarna received both her bachelor’s and master’s degrees at UCLA, making her the first alumna to serve in this position. She also holds a doctorate from UC San Francisco.

With a long and distinguished career in research, leadership, and advocacy, Sarna previously worked to create one of the first oncology nursing specialties in the country. She has mentored generations of students from all education levels and novice researchers in oncology nursing across the United States and abroad. In addition, Sarna served as the principle investigator for Tobacco Free Nurses (TFN), the first nationwide program to help nurses quit smoking, funded by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. Sarna has also led translational research projects to increase nursing interventions to treat tobacco independence in hospitalized patients in the US, China, and Eastern Europe.

An experienced nursing academic, Sarna has authored more than 200 peer-reviewed articles, books, chapters, and other publications. She was co-author of a groundbreaking World Health Organization report in 2013 on the critical role of nurses in lessening risks associated with non-communicable diseases through prevention, treatment, and symptom management. Sarna has collaborated with the International Societies of Nurses in Cancer Care and the American Association of Colleges of Nursing. She was also elected a fellow of the American Academy of Nursing, recognized as a distinguished research professor by the Oncology Nursing Society, and inducted into Sigma Theta Tau’s International Nurse Research Hall of Fame.

Sarna considers this to be a transformative time in nursing and she believes UCLA is poised to be a global leader in education, academics, and service. She hopes to grow inter-professional education and activities with medical, dental, and engineering programs on the UCLA campus. With the help of her faculty, staff, and students, UCLA’s School of Nursing will prepare nurse scholars and the leaders of tomorrow.