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School of Nursing Faculty Retreat Emphasizes Collaboration and Educational Innovation

By Phoebe Byers

As many as 75 people participated in the UCSF School of Nursing annual faculty retreat held at the Presidio Observation Post.

Faculty from the UC San Francisco School of Nursing gathered at the Presidio Observation Post on Sept. 24 for their annual faculty retreat to reflect on the past year and plan for a brighter future. The focus of the day’s activities centered on educational innovation, arrival of new faculty, leading research themes, and results of faculty-led initiatives, including clinical preceptor training in aspirational abortion and the continued development of Diversity in Action (DIVA) training modules.

"Our retreat is an opportunity to collaborate with our faculty and determine how, as a School, we can continue to educate health leaders, conduct research, and advance nursing,” said Lynda Jacobsen, associate dean for administration and finance at the School of Nursing.

Dean David Vlahov gives opening remarks at the start of the day. 

Jeneva Gularte-Rinaldo, a new Master's Entry Program in Nursing (MEPN) faculty member, takes in the sights and sounds at her first School of Nursing faculty retreat.

Dean David Vlahov, RN, PhD, invited department chairs to introduce their new faculty, which include Christopher Fox, RN, MS, an assistant clinical professor in the Department of Community Health Systems, who focuses on integrating HIV/AIDS care curriculum into the education of primary care nurse practitioners, and Kristine Warner, RN, PhD, the new director of the highly competitive Masters Entry Program in Nursing (MEPN).

Kevin Souza, MS, associate dean for medical education at the School of Medicine, was in attendance and moderated much of the afternoon's events, offering invaluable insight into educational innovation, planning, and opportunities for collaboration between the two Schools.

Chandler Mayfield, director of technology enhanced learning at the School of Medicine, provided an in-depth overview of the current best practices and approaches to merging technology and learning in an academic setting.

In addition to a focus on technology, faculty were clustered into groups and given the chance to determine their top five steps to accomplish the School's overarching goal of becoming the leading institution for graduate level education and research in nursing and sociology – an activity that promoted collaboration, teamwork, and idea sharing. Of the many ideas cultivated during the session, some included strengthening clinical sites and preceptor affiliation and developing pilot programs to launch larger grants.

Organizers say the retreat was an overall success in bringing together the best and brightest minds to help shape the future of the School. Carmen Portillo, RN, PhD, professor and chair of Community Health Systems, said “the energy level in the room was high and the process was well received.” Here’s to the upcoming academic year.

For more internal-facing stories from the UCSF community, please visit Pulse of UCSF.

Photos by Elisabeth Fall

The participants of the 2014 School of Nursing faculty retreat gather for a group photo during a break.