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Rush University College of Nursing

Rush University is a primarily health-focused institution, and the College of Nursing’s vision is to “lead nursing practice scholarship while driving health equity.” It uses a holistic admissions process. Students take a course on antiracism, and the Transformative Leadership program trains students in transforming health policy. The college has also used HRSA funding to provide stipends for nurse practitioner students to train in primary care settings, which in 2022 resulted in 69% of primary care NP graduates working in primary care professional shortage areas and 62% working in medically underserved or rural areas.

The school developed a community engagement model through the Faculty Practice Program, wherein faculty members and students provide nursing care through community partnerships. 90% of patients served by this program were racial or ethnic minorities and living below the federal poverty line in 2022. Faculty receive a salary for treating patients and participation is factored into promotion and tenure criteria. There are also three special clinics for people living in low-income housing, people who are re-entering society from prison, and food service industry workers. 

The university offers various health education and outreach programs for local residents, as well as pathway programs for youth interested in medicine and other outreach programs. Some include an annual Back to School Fair,  a Saturday Mini Medical School for elementary school students, visiting patients with intellectual disabilities in the hospital, and distributing harm reduction supplies in a mobile clinic. Students can also work on interprofessional teams to address social determinants of health in surrounding neighborhoods and lead telehealth sessions for patients with intellectual and/or developmental disabilities.

Rush has also partnered with the OpEd Project to provide the Public Voices Fellowship for faculty and staff, in which they provide health education and advocate for change in the health professions. 

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