Nursing is not a one-track career path. Each nurse’s professional trajectory can look dramatically different from that of their peers. Some thrive and rise through the ranks of a unit caring for patients in the hospital setting. Some become advanced practice providers, delivering direct primary or specialty care to their patients, undertaking or translating clinical research or managing change across organizations. Others take on the roles of educators or mentors, drawing upon their own experiences to help fellow nurses develop in academic or clinical settings. Each role comes with its own rewards and challenges, and each requires passion, dedication and flexibility.
In this issue, you will learn about some of the specialized career paths nurses can pursue. We share how nurses can impact practice and policy through research and advocacy, and what programs and support can be found at the LSU Health New Orleans School of Nursing that foster our nurses’ professional success and satisfaction.
Read on to find out more about the role of nurse-midwives, nurse educators, clinical nurse specialists and health policy advocates. Learn about our recent celebration of the 100-year anniversary of Sigma Theta Tau International, the 40th anniversary of the School of Nursing’s Epsilon Nu Chapter and the one-year anniversary of the formation of the Epsilon Nu at-Large Chapter, and how that organization supports nurses’ development as leaders, researchers and scholars. See how we are advancing opportunities for nurses by expanding our BSN program to Shreveport, graduating our first class of pediatric nurse practitioners and hosting events like the Southern Nursing Research Society Annual Conference, which helps launch research collaborations with colleagues across the Southern region.
As always, I am continuously grateful for and inspired by the ways our faculty and staff, students, alumni, partners and donors demonstrate their commitment to our mission of preparing professional nurse leaders who will transform the nursing profession and patient care.
Demetrius Porche, DNS, PhD, PCC, ANEF, FACHE, FAANP, FAAN
Dean and Helen A. and James B. Dunn Professor
Louisiana State University Health – New Orleans School of Nursing