SAN ANTONIO (March 26, 2014) – Eileen T. Breslin, Ph.D., RN, FAAN, dean of the School of Nursing at The University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio, assumed the presidency of the American Association of Colleges of Nursing on March 24 at the AACN’s 2014 Spring Business Meeting in Washington, D.C.
“Preparing the next generation of nurses to be thought leaders is critical to ushering in meaningful change at the highest levels of health care and higher education,” Dr. Breslin said. “As AACN’s president, I am looking forward to answering this call by working closely with member schools, staff and all stakeholders to shape future AACN initiatives that advance leadership in nursing education, research and practice.”
Dr. Breslin, who also serves as the Patty L. Hawken Nursing Endowed Professor, joined the UT Health Science Center as dean in April 2008. Since then, she has focused on addressing the national nursing shortage, updating and improving the School of Nursing curricula, and improving the quality of care in South Texas through evidence-based practice and community partnerships.
Since arriving in San Antonio, she has created and attained accreditation for a Doctor of Nursing Practice Program. This doctoral degree is designed to prepare nursing leaders for the highest level of professional nursing practice in one of three program tracks: nurse practitioner leadership, public health nurse leadership and executive administrative management.
In addition, Dr. Breslin led a community-supported effort to fund the nursing school’s Center for Simulation Innovation, a $3.8 million, 7,281-square-foot simulation center with a mini-hospital and home health care setting. In the center, students can appraise and respond to high-fidelity manikins with simulated medical scenarios. The students and their professors review their responses after the realistic, stressful simulations.
During her time at the Health Science Center, Dean Breslin created a Clinical Nurse Leader Program and has been instrumental in raising philanthropic donations which have allowed her to recruit outstanding professors from across the country.
She is a fellow of both the American Academy of Nursing and the American Academy of Nurse Practitioners. She is a Distinguished Practitioner in Nursing by the National Academics of Practice and has served on the National Advisory Council for Nursing Education.
Dean Breslin earned her Ph.D. in nursing from the University of Colorado Health Sciences Center in Denver. She earned her master’s degree in maternal-newborn nursing from the University of Arizona. She received her bachelor of science in nursing from Northern Arizona University and her nurse practitioner certification from the University of New Mexico.
For the AACN, Dr. Breslin has served as president-elect, treasurer, member-at-large and a member of the Government Affairs Committee. She also represented AACN at the American Nurses Association Congress on Nursing Practice and Economics, as a member of the AACN/Department of Veterans Affairs Liaison Committee, on a task force that issued AACN’s 1999 position statement titled “Violence as a Public Health Problem,” and as a state grassroots liaison.
The AACN is the national voice for university and four-year college education programs in nursing. Representing more than 740 member schools of nursing at public and private institutions nationwide, AACN’s educational, research, governmental advocacy, data collection, publications and other programs work to establish quality standards for baccalaureate- and graduate-degree nursing education, assist deans and directors to implement these standards, influence the nursing profession to improve health care, and promote public support of baccalaureate and graduate nursing education, research and practice. www.aacn.nche.edu
The University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio, one of the country’s leading health sciences universities, ranks in the top 3 percent of all institutions worldwide receiving National Institutes of Health funding. The university’s schools of medicine, nursing, dentistry, health professions and graduate biomedical sciences have produced more than 29,000 graduates. The $765 million operating budget supports eight campuses in San Antonio, Laredo, Harlingen and Edinburg. For more information on the many ways “We make lives better®,” visit www.uthscsa.edu.