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Greetings from the Director

Welcome to the University of Maine School of Nursing! If you are exploring your options for nursing education or if you are a University of Maine nursing student or graduate, I hope you find that the School’s webpage is informative and that it provides a way to stay connected with the School of Nursing.

Faculty, staff, students, and alumni take pride in the excellent reputation of the School of Nursing programs. Graduates of the traditional Bachelor of Science in Nursing (B.S.N.) program perform well on the post-graduation national licensure examination (NCLEX) and move along to rewarding careers in nursing.  They are prepared to take advantage of opportunities in new clinical arenas, take on leadership roles, and to pursue graduate education.  Our RN-Studies program provides a means for Registered Nurses to achieve their B.S.N. or M.S.N. through a flexible study plan with many distance-learning options.

Graduates of our Master’s program for family nurse practitioners excel on national certification examinations. You will find over 140 University of Maine family nurse practitioners in rural primary care settings and in specialty practices throughout Maine.  An individualized-MSN option is available for nurses who wish to focus on the role of educator, administrator, or other professional role. Graduates of the I-MSN program have moved into faculty positions in Maine’s nursing programs and in staff education departments of hospitals; others have moved into administrative leadership positions.

A Graduate Certificate in Nursing Education program was launched in 2012. This 3-course (10-credits) program prepares expert nurse clinicians for the role of educator, particularly as clinical and laboratory instructors in associate and baccalaureate degree nursing programs and as staff educators in clinical agencies.

Feedback from employers of U.M. B.S.N. and M.S.N. graduates includes comments on the exceptional preparation for complex nursing care, the degree of professionalism, and the commitment to lifelong learning shown by University of Maine nurses. Links to detailed information about the traditional B.S.N., RN-Studies, M.S.N., and the Graduate Certificate in Nursing Education programs are located on the School of Nursing homepage.

University of Maine nursing students benefit from faculty who are expert nurses in their areas of specialization in addition to being skilled educators and scholars. In the classroom, practice laboratories, and in clinical settings, students are challenged to base their nursing care upon the best available evidence and to critically analyze their practice, always striving for optimal outcomes for patients, families, and communities.  Please link to the “Meet the Faculty” section to learn more about the faculty’s diverse areas of interest.

The School’s Learning Resource Center (LRC) provides a state-of-the-art environment for mastery of complex nursing knowledge and skills. The LRC includes modern hospital equipment, life-like mannequins, and a patient simulator (“Susie”® by Gaumard) that fosters students’ skill and confidence in the development of therapeutic relationships and in the provision of safe patient care prior to their direct-care experiences in clinical agencies.

The University of Maine offers outstanding academic, civic, and recreational opportunities for students. As examples:

  • The Orono Student Nurses’ Association engages students in community service projects, fosters leadership in state and national health care forums, and provides peer mentorship for nursing students.
  • Nursing students may take on the challenge of dual enrollment in the Honor’s College [http://www.honors.umaine.edu] or of adding an academic minor in another field of interest.
  • Undergraduate nursing students who are interested in the UMaine Study Abroad program are able to fit this travel experience into the BSN program of study (with advance planning and academic advisement).  For more information about Study Abroad: http://umaine.edu/international/study-abroad.  Read the experiences of some nursing students who participated in the Study Abroad program:  http://umaine.edu/nursing/allison-does-notes-from-south-america
  • Academically qualified nursing students are invited into Omicron Xi Chapter-at-Large of Sigma Theta Tau International, the honor society of nursing [http://www.nursingsociety.org].
  • Student athletes have succeeded in this rigorous nursing program while maintaining a demanding schedule of athletic training and competitions. The University’s new Recreation and Fitness Center, climbing wall, and outdoor recreational clubs foster overall good health for all students [http://www.umaine.edu/reccenter].
  • Several nursing students have benefited from dual enrollment in the U.M. College of Military Science and Leadership. Both the Army and the Navy Reserve Officers Training Corps (ROTC) prepare the student for a nursing career in the U.S. military. ROTC nursing students are offered outstanding summer preceptorships in U.S. military hospitals. Upon completion of the BSN, the Army ROTC graduate is commissioned as a Second Lieutenant in the U.S. Army and the Navy ROTC graduate is commissioned as an Ensign in the U.S. Navy.

In addition to enjoying all that the University has to offer, the quality of life in Maine suits anyone who enjoys the natural beauty and recreational opportunities of this region. Mountains, rivers, lakes, and the coast are all close at hand.

Can you tell that I am enthusiastic about the University of Maine School of Nursing?  I invite prospective students to explore our website for more program information — and please contact us with questions. I invite alumni to stay in touch with the School of Nursing through the website (News and Events) and through email.  Please share your career developments with us!

Best wishes,

Nancy Fishwick, PhD, RN, FNP-BC
Director and Associate Professor
University of Maine
School of Nursing