UCSF School of Nursing Celebrates a Century of Excellence

Rita Moreno and Kathy Dracup

By Kristen Bole The UCSF School of Nursing Centennial Gala drew a crowd of dignitaries, educators and nurse leaders from around the world, raising more than $500,000, with proceeds supporting nursing scholarships at the nation's premier nursing school. Proclamations and letters commemorating the school's centennial anniversary were sent from Speaker Nancy Pelosi, Senators Barbara Boxer and Dianne Feinstein, and Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger. For his part, San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom officially declared June 9 as the Centennial Nursing School Evening in the City and County of San Francisco. "The centennial year offers a unique opportunity to reflect on UCSF's tradition of excellence in nursing, which extends from the first nursing education program in 1907 to the present day," said UCSF School of Nursing Dean Kathleen Dracup, RN, FNP, DNSc, in her opening speech. "That legacy of compassion, innovation and commitment is exemplified by the people in this room tonight."
Rita Moreno

Rita Moreno

Among the crowd were Bay Area philanthropist Art Kern; UCSF Chancellor J. Michael Bishop, MD; Mark Laret, chief executive officer of UCSF Medical Center; and notable UCSF nursing alumnae Gene O'Connell, RN, MS, CEO of San Francisco General Hospital, Shirley Chater, RN, PhD, former Commissioner of the U.S. Social Security Administration and Marilyn Chow, vice president of Kaiser Permanente. Many international alumni also attended the gala, including Naomi Seboni, RN, DNSc, head of the Department of Nursing Education at the University of Botswana, and Siriorn Sindhu,RN, DNSc, member of Thailand's High Council on Education. Honorary co-chairs of the gala, The Reverend Cecil Williams and Jan Mirikitani, of Glide Memorial Church, together gave a moving invocation in honor of both UCSF nurses in general and those who have staffed the Glide Clinic over the past 10 years through a UCSF-Glide collaboration.
Kathy Dracup, John Dracup, Afaf Meleis

UCSF School of Nursing Kathy Dracup, John Dracup and Afaf Meleis enjoy the festivities at the UCSF School of Nursing Centennial Gala on June 9.

Founded as a nursing hospital and nurse training program in the wake of the 1906 San Francisco earthquake, the UCSF School of Nursing has graduated more than 10,000 nurses, preparing them to serve their communities and world as caregivers, educators and thought-leaders. "We live in a city that came out of the 1906 earthquake better, stronger and an example for others," Mayor Newsom said via a video clip, calling the school "as good as it gets" and San Francisco's finest. "You are part of that incredible renewal and rebirth, part of the values that make San Francisco a special place." Today, the school's legacy of dedication and excellence continues, as it graduates its first class of nursing doctoral students through the Betty Irene Moore Accelerated Doctoral Program. That program, which accelerates the ongoing UCSF PhD program in nursing, is among the school's many collaborative efforts to increase the ranks of nurses throughout California and the nation as a whole. These students will go on to educate the nurses of tomorrow through academic positions throughout the Bay Area.
UCSF Nursing Centennial Wall of Fame

UCSF Nursing Centennial Wall of Fame.

UCSF is the largest nursing graduate program in the state of California and the No. 1 recipient of research funds from the National Institutes of Health, an indication of the caliber of its research. It is also the top graduate nursing program in the United States, ranking first or second by US News & World Report every year since rankings began. It developed the first graduate and doctoral programs in nursing in the western United States and currently enrolls more than 600 students per year. In recognition of its global reach, the school has been named a World Health Organization Collaborating Center for Research and Clinical Training in Nursing.
Cecil Williams, Janice Mirikitani, Kathy Dracup, J. Michael Bishop, Mark Laret and John Dracup

Among the 700 attendees at the gala were from left front,Cecil Williams and Janice Mirikitani and back from left, Kathy Dracup, J. Michael Bishop, Mark Laret and John Dracup.

Photos/Thomas John Gibbons Related Links: Centennial Video Celebrates 100 Years of the UCSF School of Nursing
UCSF Today, June 13, 2007 UCSF Nursing Centennial: Celebrating 100 Years of Excellence
UCSF School of Nursing Campus Ushers in Centennial Anniversary of Nursing School
UCSF Today, September 15, 2006 UCSF School of Nursing to Celebrate 100 Years of Nursing Excellence
UCSF Today, June 27, 2006