The journey toward geriatric excellence in a non-research intensive university

Document Type


Publication Date



In response to the unprecedented rise in the U.S. older adult population, nurse educators have intensified efforts to produce graduates who are sensitive to older adults' health care concerns. Critical to accomplishing this goal is strengthening curricula to include specialized gerontological content. Although the science of gerontological nursing has grown significantly over the past several decades, large-scale research projects are often confined to research or doctoral level universities in which typically more support is available. Faculty members in smaller universities in which a great number of nursing students are educated do not always have the resources to readily contribute to science. Such a challenge was faced by one nursing school in a small Jesuit New England university. This article illustrates a process to develop excellence in gerontological nursing education, as well as to promote scholarship and collaboration among faculty members at baccalaureate or master's level universities. Three years ago, the John A. Hartford Foundation, in collaboration with the American Association of Colleges of Nursing, awarded grants to select nursing programs for curricular enhancement. Implementation of this project at a small Jesuit university led to synergy among faculty that resulted in joint publications, presentations, and newly funded projects. In addition, the school earned local and national recognition for excellence in gerontological nursing education/care. The process leading to the outstanding success of this curricular endeavor is presented as a replicable model for schools in other baccalaureate or master's level settings.


Copyright 2006 Elsevier

A link to full text has been provided for authorized users.

Publication Title

Journal of Professional Nursing

Published Citation

Lange, J., Wallace, M., Grossman, S., Lippman, D., & Novotny, J. (2006). The journey toward geriatric excellence in a non-research intensive university. Journal of Professional Nursing, 22 (2). doi:10.1016/j.profnurs.2006.01.011.



Peer Reviewed