2016 Beyond the Frontier Alumni Magazine

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Answering the call.

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The Frontier Facts Degree Programs

• Post‐Master’s Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) • Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) with companion DNP with three specialty tracks: - Nurse‐Midwifery - Family Nurse Practitioner - Women’s Health Care Nurse Practitioner • Alternate entry option: the ADN‐MSN Bridge

Enrollment: A Frontier Education is in Demand •N ew admissions of over 800 students each calendar year

•Q uarterly admissions through 16 Frontier Bounds, Bridge Bounds, and DNP Bounds offered each year on the campus in Hyden, Kentucky •R equired intensives bring an additional 1,000+ students back to campus for Crossing the Bridge (offered 4 times a year), Clinical Bound (offered 14 times a year), and DNP Intensive (offered 4 times a year) •R emaining coursework and the clinical practicum are completed in students’ home communities

Enrollment at Frontier Nursing University (Fall 2015) MSN Nurse‐Midwifery: 677 MSN Family Nurse Practitioner: 695 MSN Women’s Health Care NP: 66 Post‐master’s DNP: 99 All others (non‐matriculating, post‐master’s certificates): 77 Total: 1,614

Student Body Demographics Based on Fall 2015 data: • 6 7% of enrolled students live in rural counties

• 82% of enrolled students live in Health Professional Shortage Areas

Our Achievements

•F NU’s Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) program ranked in the 2015 Top 30 Best Online Graduate Nursing Programs by US News & World Report. • In 2015, Frontier Nursing University was recognized by Minority Nurse Magazine as a winner of their Take Pride Campaign for our accomplishments with the FNU PRIDE Diversity Initiative. •F rontier Nursing University (FNU) is accredited by the Commission on Colleges of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools to award masters degrees and doctoral degrees. The nurse-midwifery post-masters certificate and master’s programs, and doctor of nurse practice degree are accredited by the Accreditation Commission for Midwifery Education (ACME). The Doctor of Nursing Practice, the Master of Science in Nursing program and the post-master’s certificates, including the nurse-midwifery, family nurse practitioner, and women’s health care nurse practitioner tracks, are accredited by the Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing (ACEN). More details are available at www.frontier.edu/ accreditation. • FNU is the largest university in the country for nurse-midwifery and nurse practitioner education. The University’s nurse-midwifery program is also the largest continuously operating nurse-midwifery program in the United States. •F rontier offered the first family nurse practitioner program in the country. •F rontier pioneered the first community‐based, distance‐education program for nurse-midwifery in the country in 1989. •F rontier has graduated nearly 5,000 nurses with advanced practice degrees. •O ne-third of newly certified nurse-midwives in 2015 were graduates of FNU.

• S tudents reside in all fifty states, five foreign countries, and on U.S. Military bases • 1 8% minority enrollment

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Dear Friends,


rontier Nursing University is proud of each and every one of our graduates who are “answering the call” as nurse-midwives and nurse practitioners providing compassionate, quality care to families around the globe. We are inspired by our current students who are “answering the call” to further their own education to be able to provide high quality healthcare to their communities. And we are grateful for the thousands of supporters and organizations who “answer the call” to support improving healthcare through generous gifts to Frontier Nursing University. Together, we are making a difference. And together we will continue to sustain, grow, and improve our university. Mary Breckinridge established the Frontier Nursing Service and founded the Frontier Graduate School of Midwifery in order to begin accomplishing her vision of improving the welfare of women and families in rural areas. We are expanding her vision to every corner of the globe and continually improving our work. At Frontier we are always striving for excellence. As a pioneer in distance education, we are developing new, innovative online methods for delivery of didactic and clinical simulation content. Through the establishment of a Faculty Innovation Center for Online Learning, we plan to position Frontier as the leader in distance learning for advanced practice nurses and midwives. As we survey the needs of the rural communities in our country, we recognize our role in improving healthcare for the people. For that reason, we will be launching a much needed Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner program in 2017. And we are very proud to report that we have formed a partnership with the FSIL Nursing School in Haiti to assist them in developing a midwifery education program. Finally, as our enrollment reached more than 1600 students this year, we recognize the financial need to help them succeed and graduate from our programs. Fundraising efforts are providing new scholarships for students and we strive to keep tuition affordable. We are pleased to showcase the achievements of Frontier Nursing University for 2015. The hard work and success described in this report help us to achieve our ultimate mission of improved healthcare for all and especially for rural and underserved families. We appreciate your role in the success of Frontier and extend our sincere thanks for “answering the call.” Sincerely, frontier . edu | 2016

Susan E. Stone, DNSc, CNM, FAAN, FACNM President


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Will You Answer the Call… in sufficient numbers to be part of the solution for meeting the increasing demand for midwifery and primary health care services in all settings? This is the burning question posed three decades ago when we realized that we could not replicate the birth center concept, meet the demand for safe home births or even develop autonomous in-­hospital midwifery­-led units if we did not find a way to educate many more midwives. It was a discouraging time with nurse-midwifery leaders postulating that the problem was that nurses did not want to be midwives because of the added responsibilities. However, my experience was that many nurses wanted to be midwives but our existing educational programs, in addition to high tuition costs, were discouraging to nurses because of the need to relocate, and the severely limited enrollment due to restricted clinical teaching sites availability. This observation was confirmed when we received 2000 inquiries from the only announcement of the Community-­based Nurse-midwifery Education Program (CNEP) in the January 1989 Childbirth Education Catalogue mailed to 35,000 nurses and childbirth educators. The growth of the enrollment in the Frontier nurse-midwifery program as well as in both distance and on campus programs leave little doubt that nurses are answering the call to become nurse-midwives. However, the problem, as I see it, is that we are not educating the nurses fast enough to keep up with the demand by women for midwifery care. This is probably most visible in the birth centers that have to turn away women seeking their care. The major obstacle to educating nurse-midwives has always been and, to some extent continues to be, access to clinical preceptor sites. This can be somewhat relieved by the simulation labs to better prepare students for real-time clinical learning but will never replace the hands on experience and evaluation by clinical preceptors. Therefore this call to action to all the FNU alumni is to 1) make precepting students part of your job description and 2) talk with the nurses that work with you and inspire them to become part of the future development of the provider teams needed to improve the care of childbearing women and families. Our goal is to be a leading educator for the 100,000 nurse-midwives and family nurse practitioners needed to develop primary care Family Health and Birth Centers. If you send the students, with your help FNU will keep growing to educate them. We CAN and WILL be part of the solution to the problems we face in caring for ALL of the people in our nation. Remember: ”All (family) health care begins with the care of the mother.“

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– Mary Breckinridge

Kitty Ernst, MPH, DSc (Hon) Mary Breckinridge Chair of Midwifery


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Table of Contents


Answering the Call...............................................6 Stephanie Purinton............................................................ 6 Cathy Fliris......................................................................... 7 Julie Paul........................................................................... 9 Kelly Polcher.................................................................... 10

Upcoming Events...........................................................11 Alumni Association........................................................12 Wide Neighborhoods.....................................................15

Homecoming: Reunite & Reconnect....................16 New Location to Support Growth................................... 19 Alumni & Courier Awards...............................................20

Commencement 2015..........................................22 Make a Lasting Difference..............................................24 Honor Society................................................................25 PRIDE.............................................................................26 Courier Program.............................................................28

BEYOND THE FRONTIER 2016 Editorial Staff Denise Barrett Director of Development and Alumni Relations Angela Bailey Associate Director of Development and Alumni Relations Michael Claussen Development Officer Mandy Hancock Courier Coordinator & Development Officer Cynthia Byars Grants Management Officer Gail Spake Writing Support Specialist

Graphic Design/Production

The Kitty Ernst Chair of Midwifery......................30

Sumo Design, LLC

Will You Answer the Call to Precept?..............................32 Programs at a Glance.....................................................34 Conference Round-Up....................................................36 Class Notes....................................................................40 Grant Report..................................................................42

Contributors Dr. Susan E. Stone President Kitty Ernst Mary Breckinridge Chair of Midwifery

Contact Us Your comments and ideas are welcome. Please contact us at the Office of Development and Alumni Relations, (859) 899-2700 or alumniservices@ frontier.edu.


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Answering the call. STEPHANIE PURINTON, CNM, CNEP Class 53 Answering the call to service and inspiration

Rock Star Midwife Honored with Rural Midwifery Scholarship S

tephanie Purinton was a labor and delivery nurse for ten years when she decided to pursue certification as a nurse-midwife. She chose to study at Frontier Nursing University.

After Stephanie was certified as a nurse-midwife, she wanted to attend deliveries as a midwife in the rural community where she and her husband, Travis, grew up. Stephanie began her practice by partnering with a local obstetrician, offering midwifery model pre‐natal services in his practice. Arizona state law does not require physician oversight for midwifery practice. However, the hospital system Stephanie works within does require that a physician be on call for midwife‐ attended births to support with complications. The Verde Valley Medical Center is a small regional hospital that services several small towns in Arizona. Stephanie worked within the hospital system to gain executive committee approval for inclusion of

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Stephanie and a nurse stay with the mother… and provide a private, calm experience, with the focus on the mother’s needs and comfort. midwife‐attended births (with midwifery model prenatal care through her obstetrician’s clinic) as a delivery option for parents. Stephanie attended her first birth in the hospital as a midwife one year after her graduation from FNU. A few years ago, Stephanie met an expecting mother who would come to be a very special patient, Mary. When Mary and her husband, Chris, decided to have a baby, they began consulting with Stephanie about their pregnancy and delivery. Mary found Stephanie’s website (www.myazmidwife.com) and appreciated

the services offered, including the added dimension of care that Stephanie provides. Chris and Mary considered a variety of options, but ultimately made their decision; they couldn’t imagine anyone other than Stephanie being with them during this wonderful time. Chris and Mary were very impressed during the pregnancy with Stephanie’s attentive, personal care. Stephanie was continually available for support and spent a considerable amount of time with the couple at every prenatal appointment—offering suggestions and patiently answering questions. Mary was amused when she was being admitted to the hospital for her delivery. When staff would ask who was delivering her baby, and Mary responded, “Stephanie,” they would all exclaim with admiration how wonderful Stephanie is. Mary said it felt like she was privileged to have a “rock star” personality attending her birth. Her experience was not at all like what Mary expected from a hospital; the environment was very home‐like and comforting. For Stephanie’s patients, Stephanie and a nurse stay with the mother, in a private room—with lights dimmed and the door closed to provide a private, calm experience and with care focused on the mother’s needs and comfort. Mary went into labor late in the evening. Stephanie had been on duty and had just delivered two other babies; however, she was present to Mary with gentle touch and calm presence. When Mary’s labor intensified, Stephanie spent more than six hours with her. Shortly after the birth of Tanner, Chris and Mary discussed how impressed and touched they were with how caring Stephanie was—not only with Mary and Chris, but also with the nurses who were attending. Mary credits Stephanie’s patience and care with helping her to avoid having a C‐section birth, because she was able to sustain the effort for a natural delivery with Chris and Stephanie’s support.


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A few days after Mary and Chris returned home with their newborn son, they discussed how fortunate they felt that they had the option for midwifery care, especially in their rural community. They felt compelled to honor Stephanie for her dedication and contributions to them and to their community—for establishing the care and birthing option they enjoyed. So they called Stephanie and asked her what she might suggest. Stephanie told them about her training at Frontier. Mary and Chris are financial planners, so they decided to establish a $500 scholarship to be awarded to one FNU nurse-midwifery student each spring and fall. The selected student would reflect the values Stephanie has shown in her community—and would aspire to practice as a midwife in a rural area. Additionally, for each scholarship awarded, the Huntleys will also set aside an equal amount

to eventually fund an endowment to Frontier Nursing University. With the support of Frontier, they announced the “Stephanie Purinton, CNM, Rural Midwife Scholarship” and invited new students to send essays describing why they would like to receive the award. The first scholarship award was given in 2014 and the Huntley’s continue to make spring and fall awards. In the last award cycle, the Huntley’s received so many compelling applications for the award, that they chose two recipients. The need for scholarships for Frontier students is great, with just 2% receiving private scholarship support. We are grateful to Mary and Chris Huntley; their generosity will continue to support new midwives for years to come.

CATHY FLIRIS DNP, FNPC, MSN Class 05 Answering the call to serve in rural areas

Wilderness and Rural Primary Care Nurse C

athy Fliris provides medical care to the citizens of Niobrara County in Lusk, Wyoming in the Rawhide Rural Health Clinic. Cathy previously lived for 24 years in the village of Tanana on the Yukon River in Alaska. The village is home to native Athabascan Alaskans, and is situated in the middle of the state, on the banks of the Yukon River. Being so far out in the wilderness, the only access is to fly or go by boat, snow machine or dog team. She explained that the locals were said to only trust newcomers who went away for vacation and then “came back,” which of course she did!

The couple moved into Tanana when Cathy was pregnant with their second son. They developed and ran a dog sled tourist business teaching people how to mush dogs and guided tourists to their log cabin. Cathy worked part-time as a nurse in an

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When Cathy was younger, she studied for her BSN in Seattle, with a federal National Health Service Corps (NHSC) scholarship that required that she work for two years in a health care shortage area. She chose to work in a hospital in Anchorage, Alaska in an internship for six months, prior to being assigned to a small 20-bed hospital in Tanana—where she met her husband who was her patient after he cut his finger with an axe. Her husband had previously established a federal wilderness homestead on the Tozitna River, situated northwest of Tanana. He had flown into Tanana, 120 miles west of Fairbanks and walked forty miles into the wilderness to build a log cabin, trap, fish, and mush dogs. Cathy joined him there after her two-year service was completed and they were married on a nearby frozen beaver pond.


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Answering the call.

Fliris homestead in Tanana, Alaska

assisted living facility in Tanana. She also had a custom arctic clothing business, specializing in making parkas and mukluks in native-inspired designs with modern materials; and went to the fish camp on the Yukon River every summer with their sons and up to fifty dogs to fish for king and chum salmon. In 2000, while still living in Tanana, Cathy was accepted into CFNP Class 5 at Frontier to study for her MSN, and then applied for and received a second NHSC scholarship.

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When Cathy graduated from FNU in 2003 and searched the federal scholarship program’s web site to find a place to serve her two-year payback service, there were no sites in Alaska listed for NPs. She found out later they were listed on the Physician Assistant site. With their children grown, she and her husband chose to relocate to Wyoming, selling their homestead and their house in Tanana to friends. The move to the rural cattle ranching town of 1500 people in Lusk, Wyoming was a move up in the civilized world for them, complete with two stoplights, a Subway, and a yoga teacher!

Cathy works in a primary care clinic associated with a 24-bed Critical Access hospital. Cathy has been the most consistent resident provider in the primary care clinic for 13 years. Her patients like that she lives and participates in their community life and they appreciate the continuity of care they receive from her. Here too, Cathy’s choice to stay is appreciated by patients and her clinic colleagues. Cathy precepts nursing students in her clinic, and finds that FNU students come well-prepared for clinical training and are her best students. In addition to her clinical practice, Cathy is also a part-time faculty member in the FNU DNP program, and enjoys teaching students about the role of the nurse practitioner in the health care system. In 2016 Cathy will move to a rural island 65 miles north of Seattle to be closer again to her family, partly due to her husband’s recent death in a kayaking accident. She still plans to teach for FNU and looks forward to continuing to be a rural health care provider in a small community. She enjoys getting to know individuals and their families. Rural health care is challenging but rewarding professionally. Practicing in a rural community affords her the opportunity to realize fully the biopsychosocial nurse practitioner model of providing care to individuals and families within the context of their community. Cathy believes that the breadth of experience that nurse practitioners gain in rural practice can equip them with the experience, maturity, and confidence to pursue health care passions and expertise in new areas. She is looking forward to bringing her gifts to a practice in her new community that reflects the kind of consistent, engaged care she has so enjoyed in her frontier, wilderness adventures.

Practicing in a rural community affords Cathy the opportunity to fully realize the biopsychosocial nurse practitioner model of providing care to individuals and families within the context of their community.


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JULIE PAUL, DNP, CNM, DNP Class 04 Answering the call to innovate

Model Early Labor Lounge Aims to Reduce Primary Cesareans D

r. Julie Paul graduated from CNEP class 42 (2006) and returned to earn a DNP in Class 4 (2011). Julie has worked in a large midwifery practice since 2012 at South Shore Hospital in Weymouth, MA and serves there as a certified nurse-midwife hospitalist. Julie, supported by a March of Dimes Centering Pregnancy grant, led development of a unique and innovative early labor management (ELM) program at her hospital. A centerpiece of the program will be an early labor lounge—the only one of its kind in the US. The quality improvement (QI) program was initiated by midwives, nurses, and physicians at South Shore Hospital and is supported by the Chief Medical Officer and Chief Nursing Officer and Obstetrics Chief in their hospital.

Julie’s ”brainchild“ design for an early labor lounge enables women to progress through a sequence of interactive “stations” during labor.

Julie’s “brainchild” design for an early labor lounge (created in collaboration with hospital colleagues) enables women to progress through a sequence of interactive “stations” during labor. The lounge is an alternative to the sort of waiting room that women typically encounter in hospital labor and delivery units. Activities in the lounge are intended to reduce stress and reduce early interventions such as pain medicines and cesarean deliveries. For instance, an acupressure station helps mothers with back pain while in labor, while a couch with a meditation CD helps with anxiety. Quickening, a quarterly journal of ACNM, will feature an article on the early labor lounge. For the next 14 months, Julie’s collaborative team will monitor the results of their mothers’ participation in the education program and early labor lounge. Inclusion in the ACNM research program takes their local project to a national arena. The development of this project is a perfect example of how nurses and midwives are change agents in the health care arena.

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Julie developed the early labor management program in collaboration with FNU co-faculty member Susan Yount, with two nurses in the hospital’s obstetrical triage unit, and with the Chief of her hospital’s obstetrics unit. Originally their project was to have been a local project to promote spontaneous progress in labor, using standardized procedures, in order to reduce the numbers of women having Cesarean sections. Already the South Shore rates for C‐section are reduced from around 33% to a current rate of 23‐25%—as the number of midwifery births has increased and women are given longer times to labor before diagnosing labor dystocia. South Shore delivers about 3500 babies a year, with 60‐80 of those delivered by midwives—an increase over the 30 midwifery births from 2012. The South Shore ELM team presented an abstract at the American College of Nurse-Midwives (ACNM) and are scheduled to do a workshop at the annual conference

in 2016. Julie and her colleagues used creativity to develop a unique program and were delighted to find their local ELM program aligns with the national ACNM QI program. They submitted a letter of intent to a multi‐site ACNM QI initiative, and were chosen to be part of the ACNM Reducing Primary Cesarean Collaborative; a data‐driven quality improvement collaborative.


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Answering the call. KELLY POLCHER, DNP, APRN, NPC, DNP Class 10 Answering the call to serve the underserved

Expanding Access and Reducing Barriers to Health Care leave to continue her studies, Kelly graduated by the time her daughter was nine months old.

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elly Polcher, FNPC (class 72, 2011), DNP (class 10, 2014) began searching online in 2009 for an FNP program to advance her nursing career. Although there is an FNP program at a local university, Kelly was impressed with Frontier Nursing University’s ranking in the US News and World Report college ratings. She was even more impressed that people she spoke with highly praised FNU’s programs, and with the warm reception she received when talking with Frontier employees about applying for the program. Kelly wasn’t alone; she and a friend in her community were both accepted into the FNP class 72 and were moral support for each other while going through their programs. After Kelly had graduated with her FNP, she began working full-time at Family Healthcare, with offices in the neighboring cities of Fargo, ND and Moorhead, MN. A year later, Kelly decided to enter the FNU doctoral program. Kelly was ready for the new challenge but knew it would be tough, because not only was she working but was also pregnant. Kelly entered the FNU DNP program in January of 2013 and had her baby in May. Using her three month maternity

Kelly continues to work at Family HealthCare Center with her newly earned DNP. She was attracted to this organization because it provides care for underserved populations. Kelly is proud to have been a part of the growth and expansion of the large clinic. When she began working with the Center, patients were served in a 20,000 square foot office or at the homeless health clinic located in the basement of a local church. In a $15M project, funded as a Federally Qualified Health Center (FQHC)—and with additional grants, tax credits, and private donations—the private, nonprofit clinic has now expanded to four adjacent buildings with approximately 50,000 square feet of space. Kelly says the staff and providers are proud of their gorgeous, modern facility with state of the art equipment. They feel the facility matches the high quality care of the providers who serve their patients. However, the expansion is not only about space. The new facility offers a more comfortable space for patients and the ability to offer additional services.

Kelly finds working with the homeless, refugee, and indigent patients without insurance is a very humbling and rewarding experience. Kelly is grateful that Family HealthCare incorporates a dental clinic, vision care, and behavioral health to promote holistic care for their broad and diverse group of patients. These services are particularly important because Family HealthCare operates the only health clinic for homeless people in North Dakota. Further, the organization recently contracted with the local refugee settlement agency, which is supported by federal programs, to provide screenings for the approximately 400 refugees who find homes in Fargo each year. Individuals from Somalia, Bhutan, and Iraq count on Family HealthCare as they enter the community not only for initial health


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Kelly loves that the clinic’s mission aligns with the training she had at Frontier, which emphasized service to the underserved. screenings but also immunizations, medications, and interventions in chronic conditions. With assistance from federal Health Resources and Services Administration FQHC grants, her clinic is able to help with Affordable Care Act registration as well as access to medications for lower costs. Kelly loves that the clinic’s mission aligns with the training she had at Frontier, which emphasized service to the underserved. Her clinic’s mission is to make health care

accessible to everyone—to take away barriers, and to provide comprehensive care with a community-based approach. The clinic treats patients and families from newborn to geriatric, and with a full scope of preventive services with a collaborative, team-based approach by the health care practitioners. Kelly explained that many patients who have not had health care services are not accustomed to consistent preventive care, and have relied on visits to emergency rooms in the past. Patients who have not had access often present with uncontrolled conditions such as diabetes. So the clinic staff and practitioners endeavor to educate patients and promote consistent preventive screenings and consistent care for chronic conditions to improve health, including mental wellbeing.

Mark Your Calendars! What: Alumni Online Gift Shop will launch in June, 2016

What: Frontier Nursing University Annual Commencement Ceremony

Also coming soon: Online Continuing Education Courses Alumni Travel Program Online Resume/CV Preparation Course

When: October 22, 2016 2:00 pm

If you have ideas for additional Alumni programming or would like more information contact angela.bailey@frontier.edu.

Where: Richard M. Nexon Center Gym 150 Wendover Road Hyden, Kentucky

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Join us to celebrate our newest graduates and catch up with Dr. Susan Stone, Kitty Ernst and other faculty. For more information contact angela.bailey@frontier.edu.


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alumni association

ew N e h T

Alumni Association Hello Frontier Alumni,


irst, I want to thank the Frontier Alumni Association Advisory Council for allowing me the privilege of serving as its president. I am humbled to serve the Alumni of Frontier Nursing University. Frontier has a rich and vibrant history and a brilliant future. Those who have passed before us honor us with their legacy, and those who follow us promise an exciting future.

Mission The Alumni Association will be a dynamic, member-focused organization, driven by the mission of Frontier Nursing University and directed towards supporting the needs of all Alumni. The Alumni Association will achieve this vision through its mission of • p romoting a strong relationship

between alumni and the University • promoting a culture of

philanthropy within the Alumni Association for University support • a dvancing the unique needs

of alumni while supporting the University’s goals • p romoting the mission of FNU

through community service, networking, and providing continuing education to Alumni

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• p romoting a sense of University

pride among all graduates • p roviding the University with

insight into the needs of the communities it serves.

I grew up in a rural Texas community of fewer than 1,000 people. I earned my ADN from Angelo State University in 1998. I then started a very long career in OB/ GYN nursing. In 2009, I graduated from Texas Tech Health Science Center with my Bachelors of Science in Nursing. In 2013, I graduated from Frontier Nursing University, CNEP class 81, with my Masters of Science in Nursing. I now work as a full scope nurse-midwife at Carl R. Darnal Army Medical Center in Killeen, TX. I am a member of the ACNM Uniformed Services Affiliate as a civilian provider. I am honored to work alongside active duty practitioners while providing care to our nation’s military and their families. My family consists of my amazing husband Derek and my two beautiful children, Kimberleigh and Garret, who have supported me throughout my career. When I think of Frontier, I think of community—a community that reaches out across the world to provide quality, compassionate, primary health care providers. We have a long history of superior, trail-blazing leaders who bring health care and education to communities where care is most needed. As Alumni President, my goal is to highlight and enhance that community by providing the support our Alumni need. We have already created Job Boards and Alumni Web pages. Further, we are working diligently on a community connection database so we can each support our fellow Alumni in our communities and across the country. We all know that Frontier educates the best primary health care providers. We need to be able to access and identify Alumni as referral sources, preceptors, and personal providers. It is my goal, and that of the Advisory Council, to support fellow Alumni in their personal and professional goals. To fulfill this goal, we need your help. You can help support your fellow graduates by being a voice for new ideas, needs, and challenges. We want to hear from you. We also need your monetary support. Your donations to the Alumni Fund help ensure our ability to continue to grow the services and programs offered to all graduates. Please go to https://portal.frontier.edu/web/fnu/alumni to learn more about your Alumni Associaton. Susan Clapp, CNM (Class 81), Alumni Council President


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alumni association

Alumni Council Susan Clapp, CNM – Class 81

I am honored to serve as a nursemidwife to those who serve in our nation’s military. Currently, I am serving at the Carl R. Damal Army Medical Center in Ft. Hood Texas. I feel so blessed to have attended FNU CNEP class 81. Frontier has been an amazing source of inspiration and support. Vice President Stephanie Lowe, CNEP & DNP – Classes 84 & 12

I currently work as a clinician in a women’s health clinic for underserved women. I completed both my MSN and DNP at Frontier. Awards Committee Chair Sheila Hinton, CFNP – Class 106

I am an FNP primary care provider serving families at a rural health clinic in northern Florida. I have been married for 30 years and have three wonderful children. I have twin 17­-year-­old daughters who keep me busy when I am not practicing as an NP. I love my work and am trying to figure out why I waited so long to earn my MSN and become an FNP. Development Committee Chair Barbara Lancaster, WHNP­BC – Class 86

Nominating Committee Chair Cathy Cook, CNM C ­ lass 17

I practice full scope Midwifery/Women’s Health in Moline IL (Medical Arts Associates). I have been a CNM since 1998. I am married to my high school sweetheart (almost 36 years!). I have two great kids and one granddaughter. I enjoy traveling, reading, and spending time with my family and friends. I am a former Coordinator of the Mia­Amiga program and recipient of the Kitty Ernst Scholarship. Members-At­-Large Tia Andrighetti, CNM & DNP – Class 9 & 2

I am an Associate Professor at Frontier Nursing University, living in New Hampshire with my family and mutt from Hyden, “Nippers.” Ed Gonzalez, CFNP – Class 79

I work for Bristol Bay Area Health Corp, an IHS facility in southwestern Alaska. Our little 16-bed hospital serves an area the size of the state of Ohio. The nearest facility to us is in Anchorage, a 1 1/2 hour flight. We have no roads to get here, you must fly or come by boat (but that would be a long, tough trip!). I work mostly ER and Walk-In clinic, but also do village travel to remote clinics. I handle prenatal to elder care and all ages in between. Frontier medicine is truly challenging, but I work with a great group of primary care providers.

Marcia Hoon Hanks, Class 1 CNEP Post graduate WHNP from FNU 2008

I live in Florence, MT with my husband Tom. I had the honor and privilege of working for FNS in the early years as a Clinical Coordinator from 1995-2002, while also working in a community supported clinic for migrant women in Ontario OR. I started a clinic for women at St. Patrick Hospital in Missoula, MT in 2004 and still provide women’s health and primary care in that clinic with three other providers. I have been cooperatively working with others towards developing a midwifery service at St. Pats. The hospital is finally planning to open its new LDRP this summer utilizing nurse-midwives. Tom and I have 5 grown children, which I consider among my best and most important endeavors. Kelly Stemm, WHNP – Class 53

Women’s Health Nurse Practitioner at the Women’s Specialty Group where I practice in Tulsa. Lisa Stout, WHNP and CNEP – Class 39

I am working full scope midwifery, currently at Ft. Sill army base as a midwife. I’m blessed to get to do what I love every day: caring for women. It’s challenging to serve women from an international community; I learn every day and believe in the future of midwifery. frontier . edu | 2016

I graduated from college (RN) in 1982 and have enjoyed working in a variety of areas within nursing. I am a WHNP­BC (alumnus from FNU, class 86) and a DNP graduate. I work full time, have a wonderful husband and adult sons, and absolutely love being an NP. I enjoy medical mission work to West Africa and plan on continuing to serve in that capacity

for many years. I love FNU and am proud to serve fellow alumni through this council.


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alumni association



Your Alumni Association

Membership in the Alumni Association is free and available to all graduates. However, as we continue to build services, programs, and activities to support you, we need your help! There are many ways you can support the Alumni Association. As graduates of Frontier Nursing University, you have a unique understanding of the history, value, and impact of this organization. Please take a moment to think about ways in which you can give back to FNU.

Time: We know our graduates

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have busy work, personal, and social lives. However, just a few moments of your time can make a huge difference. Consider giving back to FNU by serving as a Wide Neighborhoods Ambassador. Ambassadors serve as a point of contact to provide education on the programs, resources, and student experiences associated with Frontier Nursing University. Ambassadors engage in outreach activities and work to increase student enrollment. They also provide leadership to create an environment that is welcoming and inclusive of all students. As volunteers, you decide how much time you have to give. Even a small amount of time can make a difference.

Treasure: Since its inception,

FNU has relied on the generosity of friends. As an Alumnus, we hope that we can count on your help to support the programs and services offered by Frontier. Your gift allows us to maintain affordable tuition, continue to grow programs that support our mission to prepare nurse­-midwives and nurse practitioners who are leaders in the primary care of women and families, attract and retain talented student centered faculty, and maintain our historic facilities and campus.

Talent: There is no bigger or better way for you to give back to FNU then by becoming a clinical preceptor. As a graduate, you know that the FNU distance education model thrives because of talented clinical preceptors. Your willingness to help promote your profession by being an integral part of the educational experience of student practitioners is so important. At FNU, we value our clinical preceptors, so we ensure that every preceptor is offered educational resources to support you in your role as a clinical educator. Because we value your time and expertise, we offer an honorarium for precepting after the student finishes his/her clinical practicum.

Career Center Did you know that FNU now offers a Career Center open to all graduates? If you are looking for a position or your practice is hiring please check out the listings at https://portal.frontier.edu/web/ fnu/alumni­career­center.


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We are excited to invite you to join the new Wide Neighborhoods Ambassador Program. This program, which has existed for many years at FNU, has has been re­imagined to provide both students and alumni with new ways to engage with the Frontier Community. If you choose to become an ambassador you will be a part of a network of passionate, influential, and motivated FNU graduates just like yourself who help assist the University with recruitment, retention, and engagement efforts. As a part of the program, your efforts will be rewarded with FNU merchandise and exclusive reward items. As a Wide Neighborhoods Ambassador you will be able to: • Share with others your experience at FNU and the opportunities you have gained as a graduate • Further your professional experience by educating others about advanced practice nursing and networking with other professionals • Practice your leadership, communication, and people skills • Build relationships, experiences and make new memories with the FNU community • Earn reward points for exclusive FNU merchandise • Be a part of the reason prospective students choose FNU!

MISSION: Wide Neighborhoods Ambassadors promote FNU and a culture of caring by collaborating with the University and the community at large. Through recruitment, retention, and engagement efforts ambassadors will represent FNU and raise awareness of Mary Breckinridge’s model of serving rural and underserved areas.

Through our ambassador program you can promote, educate, share, and give back at your own comfort level. To learn more about the Wide Neighborhoods Ambassador program and submit your membership application, please check out our web page at https://portal.frontier.edu/web/ fnu/wide­neighborhoods. Or you can contact Angela Bailey at angela.bailey@frontier.edu for more information. frontier . edu | 2016


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Reunite & Reconnect In early October of 2015, some graduates from Classes 1 A and B and Class 2 of CNEP met in Hyden for a long overdue reunion. It happened that 25 years ago that we were admitted to CNEP as the pilot classes for a hair­brained scheme of Eunice K. M. “Kitty” Ernst. How fortunate we were to be those original students, and 25 years later to have the opportunity to reconnect.

About a year before this reunion, I lost a dear friend suddenly to brain cancer. It was completely unexpected, as those things sometimes are. I had not seen my friend since I graduated from FNS in 1991 and moved out of state to Oregon to start my first job as a nurse-midwife. We just “never had the time” to reconnect in person. Soon after his death, I started thinking about other relationships I had left uncultivated, neglected. I thought about those I wanted to see before something prevented it from happening. I thought about the people who impacted my life in positive ways and those who directed my development, my person, and my spirit. Deciding to become a nurse-midwife has had a greater impact on my life and on that of my family than any other decision I’ve made. The women, and often their families, who both directly and indirectly supported me through that process were those who shared a dream. They saw the possibilities in that gemstone idea of a distance education program. They united together as faculty and students to launch an amazing program. These were the women I met at Midwifery Bound in 1989 and later met

by marcia hanks, 1995-2002

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cnep class 1

clockwise, l to r: Monica Newby, Marcia Hanks, Susan Stone, Kerri Schuiling, Joan Slager and Lynn Rife pose with their 25th Anniversary celebration cake; Ann Abbott and Kitty Ernst; the statue of Mary Breckinridge in downtown Hyden


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or saw again at Clinical Bound (Level III). I knew I wanted to see those incredible women again. We nurses work in the shadows of some of the most dedicated women in history. I am so proud of my nursemidwifery legacy and am especially proud that my legacy is linked to the FNS (now FNU). The women of the first two classes of CNEP are pioneers as much as the men, known as the Core of Discovery, who followed Meriweather Lewis in exploration across the Louisiana Territory. We traveled from all over the USA to meet in Perkiomenville, PA to start an education program the likes of which had never been attempted. At the time we were admitted, the program was neither complete nor accredited. Faculty were still being located and hired and unbeknownst to us, there was quite a bit of apprehension about whether something like this would ever succeed. Students had no idea how to pay for

the program, but we entered it with faith and a strong desire. Someone had created a way for us to be nursemidwives and we seemed to trust innately that those who said it could be done knew what they were talking about. We became known as “The Chicken Coopers.” We met initially at Camp Unami in the Pennsylvania mountains for our Midwifery Bound experience and later met at the Ernst home for Clinical Bound. Kitty and her husband Al had ingeniously converted their backyard chicken coop into a classroom, which also served as a clinic with collapsible walls creating temporary exam rooms so we could “practice speculum exams on each other” with some privacy. As Meriweather Lewis cleverly hand­picked men who he thought most likely to help his mission succeed, Kitty hand selected women for those first classes who she believed most

Deciding to become a nurse-midwife has had a greater impact on my life and on that of my family than any other decision I’ve made. clockwise, l to r: Class One members pose outside Morton Gill on the FNU Campus; Lynn Rife and Marcia Hanks enjoying stories and memories during a Circle-up; Jane Arnold and Manya Schmidt share a laugh during the Homecoming opening reception

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Because life is unpredictable, I want to encourage other alumni, “Don’t wait so long!” kept going—much like a family. These risk­taking women, faculty, and students helped create an education system that has changed the world. And, I think it is important to acknowledge that the opportunity to become a midwife/ FNP would not have been possible if not for the pioneer­ nurses who preceded us.

likely to graduate. She knew that we must identify as a class. She facilitated opportunities at Midwifery Bound for bonds to be created and for friendships to bloom so that we would “lean on one another” despite being at a distance. She likewise found women to serve as faculty while her friends and family jumped in to support her and consequently, each of us. Some of these women contributed in the short term, some in the long term—but all were important in our transformation. We were all in unchartered territory, and no one knew what to expect. In other words, faculty and students alike forged ahead, exhibiting undaunted courage on a journey into the unknown. Kitty, her daughters Rosie and Kate, her husband Al, midwives and midwife/nurse educators, Kitty’s colleagues and friends, and the students of Class 1 and 2 were and are the most brilliant, courageous people I have encountered. It might seem like a stretch to some, but to me, we truly were pioneers.

I was so excited to see these women again. I wanted to acknowledge their contribution to my life and have the opportunity to hear about their unique journeys over the past 25 years. Our reunion was sweet. It was magical being at Wendover. It allowed us to return to the roots of midwifery in America. We toured the district, recollecting the extreme conditions and terrain our sister midwives encountered and endured. We ate great food—never in want for good southern cooking! We recounted events, shared stories, laughed, and of course, sang the songs! It was indeed a rich and special time. Because life is unpredictable, I want to encourage other alumni, “Don’t wait so long!” Think about returning to Hyden to cultivate those important relationships; to facilitate class reunions; to come back to the roots of midwifery and family nursing, and to reconnect with sister and brother nurses who have shared a similar and unique journey.

Would you like to reconnect with your classmates? Contact the Alumni Office today to schedule your reunion! angela.bailey@frontier.edu | (859) 899.2533

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When I was enrolled in CNEP, more than once I made a decision to stay in the program because of the committed efforts of my fellow students and our collective promise to Kitty that “we would graduate.” You see, if we failed, the idea failed; the program failed; and as Kitty explained, “that was not an option.” So we boosted each other up, leaned on one another, relished one another’s accomplishments, and

l to r: Flags in Hyden welcome visitors; Kerri Schuiling and Joan Slager bravely cross one of the few remaining swinging bridges in Leslie County


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Join us for

Homecoming 2016! September 30th – October 2nd Wendover Bed and Breakfast Inn Wendover, Kentucky Join us for a weekend of fellowship, celebration, and fun! This year we will be honoring Pioneer Alumni, presenting alumni awards, offering a Pharmacology CE, and celebrating

The 90th Birthday of Kitty Ernst!

Contact angela.bailey@ frontier.edu to make your reservations or to set up a class reunion!

New location to support growth in student enrollment and programming


rontier Nursing University will expand the school’s facilities in 2017 through acquisition of a new property that currently belongs to the Kentucky United Methodist Homes for Children & Youth (KyUMH). FNU has entered into an agreement to purchase the facility, located at 2050 Lexington Road in nearby Versailles, in response to growth in student enrollment and programming. As you know, Frontier students travel to Kentucky from across the U.S. to attend orientations and education sessions in preparation for online coursework and clinical experience.

The growth in enrollment over the last decade from 200 to more than 1600 students has prompted this new development. Currently, an administrative office in Lexington, KY employs 44 faculty and staff. “We are expanding our Central Kentucky operations by moving our administrative office to Versailles, where we will develop additional capacity to serve students. We could not have asked for a better location for continuing our mission than the rural site of the KyUMH, a not­-for­-profit, mission-­based organization like ours. Frontier Nursing University will leverage this property in new ways, but with the same focus on improving health and wellness for families in Kentucky and beyond,” said FNU President Dr. Susan Stone. Over the upcoming year, FNU will be working with site planners in collaboration with our stakeholders on design and renovations. The University’s leadership and Board of Directors will be working on strategic plans for how to most effectively use the new space.

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alumni & courier

Awards Distinguished Service to Society

Each year, Frontier Nursing University honors two graduates and one courier for their outstanding service to the university and their community. These awards are given at the annual Homecoming and Courier Conclave held at Wendover in Hyden, KY. This year we are proud to announce the following award recipients.


he Distinguished Service to Society Award recognizes an alumnus who goes above and beyond to provide exceptional service to his or her community. We proudly presented the 2015 award to Kerri Schuiling. Dr. Schuiling holds a Ph.D. from the University of Michigan, a master’s degree from Wayne State University and a baccalaureate degree from Northern Michigan University. And of course, her midwifery certificate was earned through Frontier’s program. She is certified both as a women’s health nurse practitioner and as a nurse-midwife. Dr. Schuiling currently serves as Provost and Vice President, Academic Affairs, at Northern Michigan University in Marquette, Michigan. She has also served as dean of NMU’s College of Health Sciences and Professional Studies. Dr. Schuiling also held positions as the Dean of Oakland University’s School of Nursing and Associate Dean and director of NMU’s School of Nursing. She served FNU for seven years as Education Director and Curriculum Coordinator, helping design the excellent curriculum delivered by FNU today. Dr. Schuiling has received several awards for her work in women’s health. She was inducted as a fellow of the American College of Nurse-Midwives, and she was a recipient of the ACNM’s Kitty Ernst Award, which is given in recognition for innovative, creative endeavors in midwifery and women’s health care. She is co-editor of the book Women’s Gynecologic Health, which received the ACNM Book of the Year Award; is on the editorial board of the journal Applied Nursing Research; and is the founding co-editor of the International Journal of Childbirth, the official journal of the International Confederation of Midwives. She has published more than 42 peerreviewed papers and book chapters. She is currently on the statewide Task Force for Nursing Practice and chair of the Research Standing Committee of the International Confederation of Midwives. She was recently selected for induction as a fellow of the American Academy of Nursing, one of the profession’s most prestigious honors.

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Dr. Schuiling’s contribution to advanced practice nursing and midwifery education has been outstanding, and we are honored to award her the 2015 Distinguished Service to Society Award.

Distinguished Service to Alma Mater


he Distinguished Service to Alma Mater honors an alumna who has continued to provide support to Frontier through volunteer efforts and/or donor support. We are pleased to honor Joan Slager with this award. Dr. Slager is a graduate of Class I of the CNEP (FNU) program in 1991. She earned her MSN from Case Western Reserve University in 1993 and her Doctor of Nursing Practice from Oakland University in 2008.


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Dr. Slager is the Director of Midwifery at Bronson Women’s Service in Kalamazoo, MI, a large, full-scope midwifery practice, which recently celebrated its 20th anniversary, receiving ACNM Foundation’s with Women for a Lifetime Gold Commendation. Dr. Slager lectures nationally on both clinical topics and the business aspects of practice, particularly in the area of billing and coding. She is the past chair of the ACNM’s Business Section; past chair of the ACNM’s Division of Standards and Practice; and is currently serving as Treasurer on the ACNM’s Board of Directors. She is a Fellow of the American College of NurseMidwives and a recipient of the Dorothea Lang Pioneer Award. Joan and her colleagues at Bronson have served as preceptors to nearly 100 nurse-midwifery students—62 of those students have been Frontier students! For her many accomplishments, her ongoing dedication to the education of nurse-midwives, and preceptorship of more than 60 Frontier graduates, we are proud to honor Joan with this award.

Courier Unbridled Service Award


he Courier Program Unbridled Service Award is given annually to a former Courier, who has carried the torch of Mary Breckinridge beyond the mountains—perpetuating the mission and spirit of Frontier in her life. The criteria for this award includes dedication to serving others; ongoing, longstanding stewardship of Frontier; and demonstration of personal conviction, courage, and a zest for adventure. We are excited to honor Mrs. Patsy Lawrence with the 2015 Unbridled Service Award. Patsy served as a Courier in 1947. She famously quotes her father as saying she went for six weeks and matured six years during her time as a Courier. Patsy’s service to Frontier did not end after her Courier experience. Patsy served as Chair of the Boston Committee for many years and is still actively involved with the Boston Committee events. She organized annual Boston events to bring together Frontier supporters and invited new supporters to join the work.

top: Dr. Joan Slager and Dr. Kerri Schuiling; bottom: Mrs. Patsy Lawrence and her husband, Bob

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We are thankful for her tireless work, which resulted in years of dedicated financial support to Frontier. Most recently Patsy made a generous gift to establish the Patricia Perrin Lawrence Scholarship at Frontier Nursing University. This scholarship will make annual awards to Frontier students into the future. This financial commitment will benefit many deserving Frontier students. For her dedication to the mission and spirit of Frontier, we are pleased to honor Patsy.


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Commencement 2015

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On Saturday, October 24th, the 2015 Commencement service was held in Hyden, KY at the home of the historic FNU campus. Over the past year, more than 550 nurse-­midwives and nurse practitioners from almost every state across the nation have completed an FNU distance ­education program. Nearly 70 of the 2015 graduates are Kentucky natives. While more than 550 graduates received degrees from FNU in 2015, not all were able to attend graduation. The commencement ceremony was attended by 161 graduates who traveled from 41 states for the ceremony.


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FNU President Dr. Susan Stone presided over the commencement ceremony and degrees were conferred on graduates of FNU’s Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) and Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) programs. MSN graduates have completed the Nurse­Midwifery, Family Nurse Practitioner, or Women’s Health Care Nurse Practitioner specialty tracks. Frontier Nursing University (FNU) graduates weren’t the only ones to be honored at the ceremony in Hyden, which attracted more than 2000 guests. Dr. Sandra May Perkins and award­-winning author Silas House both received honorary doctorates in recognition for their alignment with the vision of FNU founder, Mary Breckinridge. Breckinridge’s devoted character, passion, and dedication for delivering quality health care to underserved and rural populations motivated her to found FNU more than 75 years ago. People like Dr. Perkins and Mr. House continue to make an impact on our world with those same convictions and passions.

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Perkins received an honorary doctorate in recognition of her career dedicated to the betterment of maternal and newborn care. House also received an honorary doctorate for serving as a voice of Appalachian heritage, culture, and for his social justice efforts on behalf of the people of Eastern Kentucky and the Appalachian region. The faculty and staff of FNU couldn’t be happier to be graduating such quality nurse-­midwives and nurse practitioners into the world. And thank you to Dr. Perkins and Mr. House for your service to the underserved.


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Answer the Call to

Make a LASTING Difference Estate planning enables graduates to leave a legacy at Frontier Nursing University and support future generations of students. Planned gifts also allow our alumni and friends to fulfill their financial and estate planning goals. Planned gift donors are recognized as members of the Banyan Tree Legacy Society. Following is a brief summary of various gift types organized by the goal you may have in working through your own financial plans.

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Charitable Remainder Trusts A charitable remainder trust is an irrevocable trust that offers two gift options: with an annuity trust, the donor creates a qualifying trust that provides a fixed income for one or more individuals for a specified term of years, at the end of the term, the principal is given to one or more charities. With a unitrust, beneficiaries receive a fixed percentage of the current value of the trust assets, which are re-valued annually. Charitable Gift Annuity The donor gives cash or securities to create an irrevocable trust, and the charity pays a fixed annuity income to one or more individuals for life. Rates are recommended by the American Council on Gift Annuities, Annual payments can be deferred to a specific time, such as the retirement age of the beneficiary.

Charitable Lead Trust The opposite of a charitable remainder trust, the charitable lead trust created by the donor pays an annuity or unitrust amount to a charity and the remainder to the donor or another beneficiary at the end of the trust term. Pooled Income Fund The donor gives cash or securities to a charity’s pooled investment fund, which includes gifts from other donors. Participants receive a share of the fund’s annual income during their lifetimes. At the donor’s death, the original gift is removed from the fund and is used by the charity for its own purposes. Remainder Interest The donor deeds a personal residence or a farm to a charity with the right for one or more individuals to use the property for a specified time, when the rights of the property are transferred to the charity. Charitable Bequests These are the most popular types of planned gifts. The donor designates a charity to receive a bequest from

a will. Bequests are either a specific amount, a percentage amount of the estate’s value, or the remainder or residual amount of the estate. If you wish to remember FNU in your will, this form is suggested: “I hereby give, devise and bequeath the sum of…dollars (or other described property) to Frontier Nursing University, an educational institution organized under the laws of the Commonwealth of Kentucky.” Other Gifts These types of gifts stand on their own or in combination as part of your giving plans: • Cash • Marketable Securities • Appreciated Securities (shares of stock or mutual funds) • Real Estate • Closely Held Securities • Life Insurance • IRAs and other Retirement Plans • Tangible Personal Property Your legal and financial advisors can help you arrange the most appropriate gift commitment.

To make your planned gift or to get more information about planned giving please contact your financial advisor or the development office at development@frontier.edu.


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Honor Society The Frontier Nursing Honor Society was established in 2011. To date, there are 149 members. 2015 was an exciting year for FNHS as we became an official chapter of Sigma Theta Tau International (STTI) and our new chapter name is Chi Pi. Full membership to STTI began on July 1, 2015. The purposes of the Chi Pi chapter are to recognize the superior achievement of our members, to develop leadership, promote high professional standards, encourage the work of our members, and strengthen our commitment to the standards of our profession. Benefits for members are listed on the STTI website and include career resources; cultivating relationships with other nursing professionals; access to continuing education, publications, services, and discounts; and acknowledgment for member contributions to nursing scholarship and professional growth. The Chi Pi chapter had several speaking events in 2015 on a broad range of topics including management of hypertension, professionalism, gun violence, and self care. Speaking events for 2016 will be announced. Officers for Chi Pi are Dr. Mary Jones (President), Dr. Denise Orill (Treasurer), Beki Asti (Counselor), Dr. Penny Wortman (Leadership Succession Committee), Dr. Grace Ellen Urquhart (Finance Committee), Dr. Audra Malone (Publicity Committee), and Dr. Nancy Pesta Walsh (Program Committee).

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Current students, alumni and faculty are encouraged to join Chi Pi. Eligibility requirements include cumulative grade point average of 3.5 or higher, completed at least 25% of course work, two endorsements, and a completed application. Requirements for endorsements vary according to member status. If the applying member is a graduate student or FNU alumni, endorsements are required from a FNU faculty member and a current member of STTI. If the applying member is a nurse leader, then endorsements are required from STTI. Additional requirements for nurse leader applicants include a CV, proof of licensure, minimum degree of BSN, and list of achievements. Our next induction opportunity will be in late Spring/early Summer 2016. Please look for announcements on the website at www.frontier.edu/frontier­nursing­honor­society.


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PRIDE In 2010, FNU launched the Diversity Initiative PRIDE (Promoting Recruitment and Retention to Increase Diversity in Nurse­-Midwifery and Nurse Practitioner Education) Program.


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he PRIDE Initiative was established to accomplish the FNU strategic plan goal of increasing enrollment of minority students from by 2015. The ultimate goal of the PRIDE Initiative is to recruit and retain qualified underrepresented students in FNU’s graduate school of nursing who will meet the health care demands of an increasingly diverse population. The PRIDE Initiative is a comprehensive program that includes targeted recruitment activities, retention programs, partnerships with undergraduate nursing programs, and financial aid and scholarships. Frontier’s Diversity Initiative PRIDE has had a successful start, and students of color enrollment has already shown improvement: from 10.6% in 2009 to 18% in 2015. FNU PRIDE enrollment stood at 20 student members in 2011 and has grown to over 230 within the program in 2015. The PRIDE student organization has had 81 graduates so far. Frontier Nursing University was recognized in 2012 and 2015 by the Minority Nurse “Take PRIDE Campaign” as a place of employment that goes above and beyond in encouraging diversity; recruiting, and retaining culturally diversity students. The article “Leading the Way in Diversity”(2015), was selected by DiversityNursing.com to feature FNU for its diversity program. The Online Cultural Center for Student Cultural Diversity was launched in 2014 as an interactive learning resource center for students to access virtual modules to broaden insights on cultural healthcare trends, and cross cultural communication skills. Diversity within FNU is making an impact on the country's health provider shortage and improving the quality of care for all citizens—including closing the gap on health disparities within culturally diverse communities and through providing care to patients located within underserved and rural locations across America. Through the Diversity Initiative PRIDE Program, FNU has gained national recognition for preparing nursing students to meet the global demand of diversity and cultural health to reflect the populations they serve.


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Students, staff, and faculty attended the 2015 Pride Diversity Impact weekend.

FNU’s PRIDE Program hosted its 5th annual Diversity Impact Event on Hyden’s historic campus June 5-­7th, 2015. During this event students, alumni, faculty, and staff united for fellowship, team building exercises, and discussions related to increasing diversity in nursing and midwifery. Diversity Impact had the largest online viewing attendance, along with student organization participation from FNU Student Council, Student Ambassador Program, SAGE Mentors, and the Honor Society. Frontier’s Courier Program also brought in student interns from the University of California Berkeley, North Carolina State University, and the College of William & Mary in Virginia. The event was led by Julie Marfell, Dean of Nursing, and Diversity Initiative PRIDE Program Coordinator, Wilvena McDowell ­Bernard. The event kicked off with a group tour through Hyden, KY to visit Hurricane Creek Miner’s Memorial to learn about rural life in Appalachia and of the mining explosion that claimed the lives of 38 men on December 30, 1970.

Diversity Impact 2016 will be held June 3-5 in Hyden, KY

Dr. Sharmaine Lawson­Baker, NP, a national award­-winning nurse practitioner in New Orleans, LA, gave the keynote address. After Hurricane Katrina, Dr. Baker cared for the sick and disabled in New Orleans, where hospitals closed and doctors evacuated and never returned. Her dedication to homebound patients led to her interview with CBS Evening News. Improving health literacy also inspired her to publish her book Nola the Nurse (2015). Another highlight was the Diversity Impact Infographic and Virtual Scavenger Hunt. Students explored fun ways to interact with each other by answering game questions about FNU. Laura Willis took home the winning “Student Survival Kit” gift basket full of FNU goodies. FNU Faculty presenters included Dr. Tonya Nicholson, Associate Dean for Midwifery and Women’s Health; faculty Diane Johns, PhD, ARNP, FNP­BC; Lisa Chappell, Associate Dean of Family Nursing; faculty Maria Valentin-Welch CNM, MPH, FACNM and faculty Nena Harris, PhD, FNP­ BC, CNM. Student presentations by John Andrew Youmans, CNEP Class #129, and Elena Prendergast, CFNP Class #108, gave insights into the evolution of men in nursing and how to get involved with the Student Policy Summit, American Association of Colleges of Nursing (AACN).

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Education sessions included a range of diversity topics that addressed health disparities, bullying in the workplace, gender, and diversity in health care. Students even learned how to use their skills and creative artistic expression to

inform diverse populations of disease outbreak in the case of an emergency.


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Courier Program

Mandy Hancock, Courier Program Coordinator


am left in a great position following Nancy Reinhart who built an amazing foundation for me. I know I have huge shoes to fill, and I’m really grateful for the opportunity.

I am extremely excited to be part of this amazing program. While I was not a Courier myself, I find the stories so inspiring. The opportunity to be part of this program means a lot to me, and I feel a huge sense of responsibility for carrying on the legacy.

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I began at FNU as the Director of Clinical Credentialing. I worked in the Credentialing Department at FNU for 5 years. I first applied at FNU because it felt like the best of all worlds for me. Service is a huge part of my family: for most of her career my mother worked in Appalachia for a non­profit, so I grew up volunteering for numerous programs in that area. I spent the summer I turned 20 in Appalachia working at a camp for underprivileged children. This experience shaped my view of the world considerably. It is an experience I carried with me through all I have done, and I’m incredibly excited to be part of a program which focuses on this same population. When the Courier Coordinator position became available, I jumped at the chance to be more directly involved in carrying out the tradition and mission of this organization. Also, having worked first hand in Appalachia and seeing the needs of the families, and especially the children, I felt called to be part this program that continues to care for those individuals. Courier Program Story In 1928, Mary Breckinridge, founder of Frontier Nursing University, established the Courier Program, recruiting young people to come work in the Kentucky mountains and learn about service to humanity. Couriers escorted guests safely through remote terrain, delivered medical supplies to remote outpost clinics, and helped nurse­-midwives during home visits and births. Frontier has benefited tremendously from the 1,500 Couriers who have served since 1928. As our organization has evolved, so has the Courier program. In the current program, undergraduate students apply to the Courier internship and are assigned to complete service at rural health clinics in the Appalachian Region and birth centers. We accomplish this by working with our incredible alumni network! Couriers work under the mentorship of FNU nurse practitioners and midwives. This 8-week Summer Service Internship runs from June to August. Couriers fulfill vital support services at their respective sites, as well as assist in non­clinical activities and observations. In addition to service at the clinic site, Couriers participate in secondary community service projects. This past summer, Couriers volunteered a total of 558 hours at their secondary service sites, which marked a 311% increase over the previous summer.

The Courier dorm at Wendover


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Courier Program goals are to: 1. Introduce Couriers to the value of public health and primary health care services to people living in rural and underserved communities 2. Support clinical and other community sites by meeting critical needs that would otherwise go unmet 3. Foster cultural humility through Courier engagement with diverse communities and fellow Couriers Our 2015 Couriers came to Wendover for Courier Bound in June. These passionate and driven students came from numerous universities across the United States to learn about rural health care and gain perspective on community health.

Couriers served at the following sites this past summer: Little Flower Clinic in Hazard, KY; The Hazard Clinic in Hazard, KY; Lisa Ross Birth Center in Knoxville, TN; Hospice of Hazard in Hazard, KY; Manchester Memorial Hospital in Manchester, KY; Red Bird Missions in Beverly, KY and the White House Clinic in McKee, KY. A special THANK YOU to FNU alumni at these sites who make this program possible by mentoring our Couriers! The group spent their summer doing critical tasks, such as filing, answering phones, following up patient calls, and patient surveys. They also created brochures and educational materials, attended fairs on behalf of the clinic, updated social media, organized and led camps, and many other duties essential to the clinics. Several of this year’s Couriers plan to become doctors, nurse practitioners, or nurse-midwives, and I believe some of them will be important leaders in this changing health care landscape. Following are some reflections that Couriers wrote about their experiences and how it has shaped them as individuals and future practitioners:

4. Facilitate Couriers’ experience of FNU’s mission in action and encourage them to embody the Frontier legacy in their later vocations and personal lives

“ I want people to know that Kentucky is one of the friendliest states you will ever come across. It’s one thing to hear about southern hospitality, but it’s another to truly experience it. This experience taught me to consider where your patients are coming from, their background, their culture, and to find creative ways to work with their troubles. Applying for this internship was one of the best decisions I’ve ever made.” “ This summer has been a once-­in-­a-­lifetime experience. I have made lasting friendships and wonderful memories. More importantly, my clinical experiences have given me insight and perspective on the practice of primary care in Eastern Kentucky.” “ I know I am going to speak very highly about the Courier program for as long as I live. It has been one of the best experiences of my life. It confirmed my career path while providing so many other great opportunities.” “ After my time here, I feel I must become involved in improving the public health climate, especially where it covers underserved populations.”

If you are currently working in Appalachia, consider hosting a Courier. Contact us today at courier.program@frontier.edu or call (859) 899­-2827 to get more information. Visit us on the web: www.frontier.edu/courier or on Facebook: www.facebook.com/groups/2408078621/ Come Visit us at Wendover!

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Learn More About the Courier Program!


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The Kitty Ernst

Chair of Midwifery Frontier Nursing University

For half a century, Kitty Ernst has been a pioneer in both the field of midwifery and in developing the best care possible for families in pregnancy and birth.

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itty has been a permanent leader in the nurse­-midwifery profession since graduating from the Frontier Graduate School of Midwifery in 1951. Kitty has graciously shared her personal story, her passion, and her vision with every single class of incoming Frontier Nursing University students since the inception of the distance program in 1989. Her experience as a Frontier student—attending the home birth of a strong mountain woman—forever changed her view of birth and the potential role of nurse­-midwives in the natural birth process. After practicing as a nurse-­midwife, Kitty turned her attention to advocating for nurse­-midwives to play an important and respected role in our society’s health care system, a pursuit she continues to this day.

the Salvation Army Booth Maternity Center in Philadelphia. She designed a project to develop and evaluate a program of Self­-Care/Self-­Help Education Initiated in Childbirth, and assisted in planning and implementation of the demonstration Childbearing Center at Childbirth Connection program. She was also the cofounder of the National Association of Childbearing Centers, now the American Association of Birth Centers. As Director of the National Association of Childbearing Centers, she continued to be a leader in the effort to bring birth centers into the mainstream of health care delivery and helped to institute the Commission for Accreditation of Freestanding Birth Centers.

While starting her own family, she began working as a parent educator, teaching some of the first childbirth education groups of the International Childbirth Education Association. As a field consultant for the Maternity Center Association, she developed a family-centered maternity care program provided by an obstetrician/nurse-midwife team at

During the 1980s, Ms. Ernst became concerned about two issues: the small number of nurse-midwives being educated each year, and the fact that the majority of nurse­-midwives being educated in large tertiary care centers had a lack of out-­of-hospital experience. To address these issues, she led the design and implementation of the first distance educa-


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Graduates dressed up as the cast from “Call the Midwife” pose with Kitty Ernst at the 2015 ACNM Alumni & Friends Reception; Tonya Nicholson pins Jill Alliman with the Kitty Ernst Chair of Midwifery commemorative pin; Kitty Ernst at patient’s home during her time as a District Nurse-Midwife; Susan Stapleton receives her Kitty Ernst Chair of Midwifery commemorative pin from FNU President Susan Stone.

tion program for nurse­-midwives, which was adopted by the Frontier School of Midwifery and Family Nursing and has grown to the present­-day Frontier Nursing University.

This prestigious faculty position will support a key midwifery faculty member for FNU in perpetuity. The fund will be held in the FNU endowment and permanently named in honor of Kitty Ernst. Please join us in honoring the life and the legacy of this amazing woman by making your donation to the Kitty Ernst Chair of Midwifery today. All who donate $1,000 or more will receive a special commemorative pin to show your commitment to the future of Nurse-Midwifery.

To make your donation to the Kitty Ernst Chair of Midwifery fund, please see our online donation form located at https://portal.frontier.edu/web/fnu/chair­of­midwifery

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We honor Kitty for her relentless work to see the community-based nurse-midwifery education program be born. So convinced, and rightly so, of the need for a distance based nurse-midwifery program, Kitty managed to pilot the first ever class from her farm in Perkiomenville, Pennsylvania. She welcomed, with open arms, Class 1 students for the first ever Midwifery Bound. Without Kitty’s determination to prove this type of program could and would work, the idea could never have come to fruition. She assembled the nuts and bolts, including the instructional materials needed, repurposing her chicken coop to act as temporary learning space, and willed the entire operation to success. To honor Kitty’s personal sacrifices in the creation of our nurse-midwifery program, her lifelong leadership, and her undying passion to offer safe and respectful care to

women and babies, Frontier Nursing University established the Kitty Ernst Chair of Midwifery.


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Will You Answer the Call to


As an FNU graduate you understand the essential role preceptors play in our program. Currently FNU Alumni make up 17% of over 6,000 individuals serving our students as preceptors. We need YOU to answer the call to help your fellow FNU community members meet their educational goals. All graduates are eligible to precept one year after their graduation date. Besides helping to mold and guide the education of your future peers, as a preceptor you receive these additional benefits: - free preceptor training course, “The Gift of Precepting,” worth .2 CEUs - an honorarium based on the percentage of time spent precepting students - a certificate of appreciation suitable for framing - 10% off non-matriculating courses at FNU - access to the latest clinical guidelines in order to stay current in practice - you become part of continuing the rich Frontier history and legacy of providing quality education.

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More information on how to become a preceptor can be found at www.frontier.edu/preceptor.

Preceptor Spotlight: LaTicia Tharrington Warren County Free Clinic in Warrenton, NC Ms. Tharrington recently purchased Primary Care of St. Pauls, NC, but had worked as the medical director of the Warren County Free Clinic in Warrenton, NC for over ten years. Catina Rieves (FNP Class 109) shares this touching tribute of her former preceptor: “Ms. Tharrington had a posting on EPNetwork offering to precept a nurse practitioner student. I remember interviewing with her; she had me shaking in my skin. This was my last clinical site, but the first one who interviewed me! I was sure that I got every question wrong. To my surprise, she offered me a slot to work under her at the Warren County Free Clinic. Later, I would learn why she was so strict about the type of student that she accepted. I understand the concept of understanding the disease process, but Ms. Tharrington thinks you should be able to draw it! I call her the “patho junkie.” She had a whiteboard that she loved to draw diagrams on. You would be in the middle of a discussion, and she would walk past you and go to the whiteboard. The other student and I would silently cringe. We loved being there together for the two-in-one effect. Another quality I loved about Ms. Tharrington was how she let her students take over the patient, and she would never rush us. When we presented the case, she would always say, “So what are you going to do?” If you decided to order a medication, she would nicely slide over her script pad. After you finished writing the script (or so you thought), she would nicely slide over a new, blank one so that you could do it over, the correct way. How quickly you realize that electronic charting is a luxury. At the Warren County Free Clinic, Ms. Tharrington was the sole provider for the uninsured of this county. Not only did you have to treat the patient and coordinate their care, but you also have to find a way to fund it. The population served here are in a rural county with a very high unemployment rate. I was honored to witness her struggle between remaining in this clinic and venturing off to open her own practice. In May 2015, Ms. Tharrington opened her practice, realizing a lifelong dream. Catrina concludes that "because of Ms. Tharrington’s steadfast guidance, I have been able to convert my Registered Nursing position into one of an Advanced Practice Nurse Practitioner with confidence. Today I am a Commissioned Officer with the United States Public Health Service stationed at the Federal Medical Center in Butner, NC.”


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Preceptor Spotlight: Jessica Nagel Sutter West Women’s Health & Sutter Davis Hospital, Davis, CA Ms. Nagel, CNEP 47, is a full scope nurse-midwife at Sutter West Women’s Health and Sutter Davis Hospital. The patient population in this semi-rural community outside of Sacramento is very diverse. In addition, the Sutter Davis midwives share call with the Davis Community Clinic, which is a Federally Qualified Health Center and serves a diverse, low-income, and uninsured/underinsured patient population. Michelle Walker, recent CNEP 99 graduate, enthusiastically nominated her former preceptor and praises her as “committed to helping student nurse-midwives have a thorough, hands-on clinical experience [by] allowing her students to jump right in and learn by doing.” Ms. Nagel and other Sutter Davis midwives were recently featured in the new documentary, "The Mama Sherpas," about the growing movement of collaborative care between physicians and midwives. More information about “The Mama Sherpas” can be found at www.thehospitalmidwife.com

“To teach is to touch a life forever” A sofa pillow with this needlepoint on it was sent to me many years ago by a family physician who attended the first “How to Start a Birth Center Workshop” in Nashville. Dr. Barbara Levin became a consummate and passionate supporter, establishing Tennessee’s first publicly supported, rural birth center in Madisonville. Your teaching is the most important part of the student learning experience and is what touches a life forever. In spite of distance education and the plethora of visuals, advanced technologies, and simulators for learning, academics alone cannot produce the nurse practitioners and nurse-midwives needed to meet needed to meet the growing demand for their services. You are where “the rubber hits the road” for the student trying to put all the knowledge, skills, and judgment together. All practicing nurse practitioners and nurse-midwives have the have the challenge and the opportunity to share their expertise to help meet this growing demand at this critical juncture in the development of the profession. It is a simple fact that if we cannot produce qualified and confident midwives, we cannot fully integrate midwifery into our health care system.

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On-line training is available to help you accept this challenge with confidence. Preceptors before you have testified how teaching students enriched their lives and their practice. This is a call for each of you to say, “Yes I can and will!” and get on with it. Your children, your grandchildren and all future generations are counting on you.


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Programs at a Glance I

n January 2014, Frontier Nursing University implemented the new MSN+Companion DNP curriculum for all incoming students.This new curriculum allows students to complete a Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) with a focus in nurse­-midwifery, family nurse practitioner, or women’s health care nurse practitioner studies and affords them the opportunity to seamlessly progress to a companion Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) degree. The MSN+Companion DNP program is a new approach that offers more options for students, and provides the opportunity for many more nurses to achieve the highest level of nursing and midwifery clinical education available by completing the DNP degree. FNU’s new MSN+Companion DNP curriculum is designed to prepare nurse­-midwives and nurse practitioners to be excellent clinicians as well as leaders in the health care system. FNU graduates will be change agents who improve the health care system while providing high-quality primary

In January 2014, Frontier Nursing University implemented the new MSN+Companion DNP curriculum for all incoming students. health care with a focus on women and families in rural and underserved areas. The first students enrolled in the new curriculum are now completing the MSN portion of their education and will soon make the decision to continue in 2016 towards the Companion DNP or exit at the Master’s level. The mission of Frontier Nursing University remains the same: to educate nurses to become competent, entrepreneurial, ethical, and compassionate nurse-­midwives and nurse practitioners who are leaders in the primary care of women and families, with an emphasis on underserved and rural populations. The MSN+Companion DNP follows the same format that the MSN program has previously. All students begin the program by attending Frontier Bound in Hyden; complete didactic coursework online; and then return to Hyden for Clinical Bound before beginning the clinical practicum.

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The FNU distance learning format is familiar to most alumni who graduated from the distance program.





Attend ”Frontier Bound,“ a 4-day orientation session in Hyden, Kentucky

Complete online coursework for Levels I and II at home

Return to campus in Hyden, Kentucky for “Clinical Bound,“ an 8-day clinical skills incentive

Complete clinical practicum under the guidance of a preceptor in your home community





Successfully complete comprehensive exam for specialty track and receive MSN (or postmaster’s certificate)

Opt to seamlessly complete Companion DNP at FNU or exit program with MSN degree

Complete additional 17 credit hours (including 360 clinical hours) if you choose to complete the Companion DNP

Graduate with DNP upon successful completion of all program requirements


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Below are snapshots of current programs offered at FNU. We encourage graduates considering a return to school for a Doctor of Nursing Practice degree to choose Frontier’s Post-Master’s DNP program!

Nurse-Midwifery A graduate program for registered nurses with a bachelor’s degree who wish to become a nursemidwife: Earn a Master of Science in Nursing degree with the option to complete a Companion Doctor of Nursing Practice Degree. Program of Study: • Two on-campus sessions in Hyden, KY (4 days, and 8 days) • Complete coursework online • Complete clinical practicum in home community Time Frame: • Course terms are 11 weeks in length with a 2-week break between terms • Typically 2 years full-time (part-time option available) to complete the MSN; students may exit wit the MSN degree or opt to complete the 17 credit hour Companion DNP

Family Nurse Practitioner

Women’s Health Care Nurse Practitioner

A graduate program for registered nurses with a bachelor’s degree who wish to become a family nurse practitioner: Earn a Master of Science in Nursing degree with the option to complete a Companion Doctor of Nursing Practice Degree.

A graduate program for registered nurses with a bachelor’s degree who wish to become a WHNP: Earn a Master of Science in Nursing degree with the option to complete a Companion Doctor of Nursing Practice Degree.

Program of Study

Program of Study

• Two on-campus sessions in Hyden, KY (4 days, and 8 days)

• Two on-campus sessions in Hyden, KY (4 days, and 8 days)

• Complete coursework online

• Complete coursework online

• Complete clinical practicum in home community

• Complete clinical practicum in home community

Time Frame:

Time Frame:

• Course terms are 11 weeks in length with a 2-week break between terms

• Course terms are 11 weeks in length with a 2-week break between terms

• Typically 2 years full-time (part-time option available) to complete the MSN; students may exit wit the MSN degree or opt to complete the 17 credit hour Companion DNP

• Typically 2 years full-time (part-time option available) to complete the MSN; students may exit wit the MSN degree or opt to complete the 17 credit hour Companion DNP

Post-Master’s DNP A doctoral program designed for practicing nurse-midwives and nurse practitioners who have completed a master’s degree. Program of Study • Two on-campus sessions in Hyden, KY (3 days each) • Complete coursework online • Complete self-directed practicum in home community • Complete capstone project Time Frame: • 15 months

Coming soon — the Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner specialty track FNU is pleased to welcome Dr. Patricia Cunningham as Associate Dean for the Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner Program. FNU included development of a psychiatric mental health nurse practitioner program in the 2015-2019 Strategic Plan. Dr. Cunningham will develop the curriculum, seek accreditation for the program, secure clinical sites, and recruit faculty for the program throughout 2016 with plans to admit its first students in January 2017.

We are excited for the wealth of knowledge and experience she brings to Frontier in order to implement the new program.

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Dr. Cunningham completed a Doctor of Nursing Science Degree in Psychiatric Nursing from the University of Tennessee Health Science Center in 2001 and a Master of Science in Nursing with a specialty of psychiatric nursing from Indiana University in 1986. She has been certified as a psychiatric clinical nurse specialist since 1986 and as a family nurse practitioner since 1994. She has continuous certification as a Family Psychiatric and Mental Health Nurse Practitioner since 2006. In addition to her twelve years of nursing faculty experience, Dr. Cunningham has more than 35 years of psychiatric nursing experience. Dr. Cunningham served as President of the American Psychiatric Nurses Association from 2012–2015.


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Each year, Frontier is well-represented at conferences across the country. We invite you to join us at these conferences in 2016! For details, email alumniservices@frontier.edu.

American College of Nurse-Midwives (ACNM) The ACNM 60th Annual Meeting and Exhibition was held in National Harbor, MD from June 27 through July 1, 2015. Frontier Nursing University faculty, staff, alumni, students, and preceptors attended the conference, representing the University with posters, education sessions, presentations, and awards. The FNU annual Alumni & Friends reception on the evening of June 29th was well attended with more than 200 guests! FNU President Dr. Susan Stone and Dean of Nursing, Dr. Julie Marfell, gave updates on current happenings at FNU, while Director of Development Denise Barrett and Associate Director of Development Angela Bailey spoke to the crowd about campaigns for the new Kitty Ernst Chair of Midwifery and Alumni fundraisers. Each of the preceptors who attended the reception were given a gift from our Associate Dean of Midwifery, Tonya Nicholson. Closing the reception was FNU Mary Breckinridge Chair, Kitty Ernst, who gave an inspiring speech to attendees.

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Our reception was a kickoff for the Kitty Ernst Chair of Midwifery Fundraiser. All reception attendees at our reception enjoyed a beautiful tribute video for the fundraiser and were invited to donate if they pleased. We raised nearly $30,000 in donations at ACNM! Donors of $1,000 or more received a beautiful pin.


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American Association of Nurse Practitioners (AANP) FNU Faculty, alumni, students, staff, and preceptors along with over 5,600 other nurse practitioners traveled to New Orleans, LA for the 50th Anniversary of AANP. The 2015 conference was held from June 9-14th at the Ernest N. Morial Convention Center. On Friday, from 6-8 p.m., FNU hosted the annual ACNM Alumni & Friends reception. There were around 50 attendees this year, including faculty, students, alumni and preceptors. We were also excited to welcome a couple of prospective students who showed up to learn more about Frontier. Dr. Julie Marfell, Dean of Nursing, led the Frontier special tribute to all FNU preceptors by recognizing each of them with a gift during the reception.

Kentucky Coalition of Nurse Practitioners and Nurse Midwives Conference (KCNPNM) Alumni, faculty, staff, and friends gathered on April 23rd, 2015 for an evening reception at the Kentucky Coalition of Nurse Practitioners and Nurse Midwives Conference. Faculty and Staff answered questions, shared updates, and gave a sneak peak at the wonderful new pendant designed for Frontier by a Kentucky artist. The evening was filled with good food, good conversation, and many laughs! Thank you to all who attended!

Florida Alumni & Friends Gathering On May 7th, 2015 Frontier alumni, faculty, staff, and friends gathered on the patio at Copper Canyon Grill in Orlando, FL. The weather was wonderful and the company even better! Members of the FNU community enjoyed appetizers and wonderful conversations about the challenges in health care today and the advantages of having been educated at FNU. New friends were made, connections rekindled, and new preceptors and faculty recruited. Thank you to all who attended for making the evening such a success. frontier . edu | 2016

If you are interested in having an Alumni Gathering in your community, please contact Angela Bailey, Associate Director of Development and Alumni Relations at angela.bailey@frontier.edu.


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Miles for Midwives On Saturday, October 3rd, 2015, Dwynn Golden, Regional Clinical Faculty for Frontier Nursing University, braved the intermittent rain and cool temperatures to lead a team of FNU graduates and students in the 12th Annual Miles for Midwives 5K in Brooklyn, NY. The annual event is a Fun Run and Birth Fair that brings together families, birth workers, and healthy-birth supporters for a day devoted to improving maternity care and community wellness. Angela Bailey, Associate Director of Development and Alumni Relations, manned the FNU booth at the Birth Fair to educate the community about the University.

AABC Birth Institute The AABC Birth Institute and Annual Meeting was held October 1­4th, 2015 in Scottsdale, Arizona. This conference brought together more than 300 supporters of the birth center model. FNU was well represented with many faculty, students, alumni, and students in attendance.

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The AABC Founding Mother and FNU Mary Breckinridge Chair of Midwifery, Kitty Ernst, was in attendance to support Frontier Nursing University throughout the conference. The annual FNU Alumni & Friends reception had more than 50 guests in attendance. Guests enjoyed meeting other alumni and preceptors. They were all able to network and share their experiences of FNU and their nurse­-midwifery stories as Dr. Susan Stone passed the mic around. FNU preceptors were recognized at the reception and each received a gift for being so valuable to FNU.


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Digital Summit As pioneers in the field of Midwifery, Frontier Nursing University once again blazed new trails by offering the first Digital Summit in celebration of National Nurse-Midwifery Week.


The event, Today’s Nurse­-Midwives: Creating a Collaborative Community of Care, brought together a number of industry leaders to explore the latest in high quality team health care. With a focus on collaboration, topics for the Summit included:

• Two live­streamed sessions from the American Association of Birth Centers Birth Institute - Building Bridges from Birth Center to Hospital: Transfer and Collaboration

•M idwifery Policy Issues: Why Change is Needed Now •M aking Change Happen, with the Consumer as the Center of the Team

- Optimizing Collaboration in the Health Care Team The summit was free for any who wished to attend. If you were unable to participate in any session at its scheduled time, recordings are now available for you to view at frontier.edu/MidwiferyWeek.

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class notes

Class Notes

updates on frontier alumni

Karen Smith Ady, CNEP 69, currently working as a CNM at Olive Branch Birth and Family Wellness in Roosevelt, UT. Karen is also serving as adjunct faculty for Salt Lake Community College in Salt Lake City, UT. Christy Anderson, CNEP 109, is working in a full scope hospital midwifery practice in Robbinsdale, MN. Simone Asiatico, CNEP Bridge 80, is working as an Army midwife in GA. Stefanie Bates, CNM (Class 75) was featured in the July issue of Forsyth Woman, a publication celebrating Forsyth County, NC and the women who reside there. Stefanie was hired in April by Novant Health Triad Obstetrics and Gynecology as their first Midwife on staff.

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Chantielle Maclin Blackwell, CNEP 103, is working with St. Vincent Healthcare in Billings, MO. Donna Lemaster Bredenberg, FNP (Class 85) has just finished her first year of practice at the outpatient pediatric oncology clinic and day clinic at Cincinnati Children’s Hospital. Tammie McDonald Brouwer, CNEP 48, (CMN,/WHNP‐BC) is working with a full scope private practice, attending births in Harrisonburg, VA.

Susan Culp Clapp, CNM (Class 81) is currently serving at Carl R. Darnal Army Medical Center in Ft. Hood, TX as a civilian midwife. She lives in Waco with her husband and two children. She loves her job and FNU where she is currently serving as the President of the Alumni Advisory Council. Rhonda Conley, CNEP 39, is working in a hospital-based private practice in Morgantown, WV. Carmen Kosicek, CNEP Class 15 writes that her first book, Nurses, Jobs and Money, originally self published in 2012, has been awarded the ’Best Book Award of 2014’ out of ALL the books that Amazon sells. Her new book, Nurses, Jobs and Resumes, is available through Amazon, Barnes & Noble and other distribution channels.

James Corder, Bridge 77, DNP 12, is practiciing at McCreary Primary Care Center in Whitley City, KY. Barbara Crone, DNP 12, has joined Women’s Excellence in Midwifery in Lake Orion, Michigan. Karen McDonald Crouse, CNEP 48, is currently working with a full scope midwifery private physician group attending hospital births in Hanover, PA. Lela Cupp, CNEP 113, is currently working on establishing policies for her local hospital to be the first practicing CNM in Elk City, OK. Jessica Co, FNP 91, is practicing at the University of Kentucky in Lexington, KY. Melanie Combs, CNEP 101, is currently working at a Med Spa with Women’s Health Care in Tampa, FL.

Anne Z. Cockerham, CNEP 27, was appointed as the FNU Associate Dean for Academic Affairs in 2015. Dr. Cockerham was awarded the Agnes Dillon Randolf Award at the University of Virginia School of Nursing in 2016 for her significant contributions to the field of nursing history. Congratulations Anne!


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class notes

Homecoming 2016: Celebrating Our Pioneer Alumni

Lakieta Edwards, CNEP 85, DNP 14, is working as an NP at the Lawndale Christian Health Center in Chicago, IL. Lauren Ervin, CNEP 87, DNP 14, is practicing as a midwife for the U.S. Air Force in Virginia. Eva Falkner, CNEP 54, is working in a full scope university, hospital-based practice on Long Island, NY. Jennifer Fleck, FNP 95, is currently working in Bakken Oilfield, ND at a primary care clinic and Occupational Medicine Mobile Clinic. Jennifer Alston Garate, CNEP 104, opened her own practice, Southern Arizona Midwives, in Sierra Vista, AZ. Sherilyn Gibbs, FNU DNP Class 16 received the W. Newton Long Award at ACNM. The award is given to a midwife to fund projects related to the advancement of midwifery.

Jessica Henman, Class 56 and Kate Bauer, Executive Director of the American Association of Birth Centers, were featured in the St. Louis Post‐Dispatch for their study on reducing premature births and cutting costs. Jessica is the clinical director and midwife at the Birth and Wellness Center in O’Fallon, MO. Whitney Henriquez, CNEP 90, is working in a full‐scope midwifery practice in Rockford, IL.

Rachel Carr Kulic, CNEP 84, is currently practicing at Mountain Midwifery Center in Denver, CO. Nicole Haugan Lennon, CNEP 64, is working in a freestanding birth center in Austin, TX. Carolyn Mank, CNEP 94, is working in an academic midwifery/ MD practice, Saint Louis University School of Medicine in Saint Louis, MO.

Stella Williams Johnson, FNP 97, is working in a rural family practice in Wayne City, IL.

We want to hear from you!

Do you have news about your practice? General updates? Getting married? Having a baby? Let us know! We would love to expand our class notes to include information from all of our alumni. frontier . edu | 2016

Cori Gilkey, CNM, DNP Class 18, has joined AAPHC as a Certified Nurse‐Midwife at the Mirian Worthy Women’s Health Center. Gilkey earned her degree in Nursing from Santa Fe College and her Masters of Science in Nursing from Frontier Nursing University. She is a member of the American College of Nurse‐ Midwives and the Association of Women’s Health, Obstetric and Neonatal Nurses.

We are happy to announce that the 2016 Homecoming Celebration will be held in Hyden, KY from September 30th – October 2nd. This year Homecoming will feature a Pioneer Reunion (Graduates 1939 – 1989). All Alumni are welcome to attend and our Alumni staff would be thrilled to assist with class reunions. Mark your calendars today and watch for more information coming soon!


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grant report

Grant Report FNU remains committed to seeking federal and private funding to support educational programs, new technologies, special initiatives, scholarships, facilities and other needs. This past year, our institution celebrated many successes in terms of grant support to fund a broad range of initiatives. Private Funding

Federal Awards

FNU is fortunate to have partnerships with foundations and organizations that help champion our mission, students, and special projects. Below are the awards received during 2015.

FNU continues to obtain funding through competitive grant mechanisms within the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Health Resources and Services Administration.

• Thompson Charitable Foundation Facilities – Garden House windows

Scholarship for Disadvantaged Students (SDS) Total award: $1,350,000 over four years (2012–2016)

• Margaret Voorhies Haggin Trust – Website support • Denver Foundation (donor advised fund, Alan Howard) – IT support and the Marguerite B. Howard Scholarship – faculty innovation and Dean’s Emergency Fund • Cralle Foundation – simulation equipment for Clinical Bound lab • Virginia Clark Hagan Foundation – clinical tracking system to streamline the management of students’ clinical experiences • Berea College Appalachian Fund – student scholarships • Elsa Heisel Sule Trust – scholarships for students in need • Jonas Center for Nursing Excellence – new support awarded to 6 meritorious doctoral nursing students

This award provides scholarships to 90 students over the grant period. The purpose of the SDS program is to increase diversity in the health professions and nursing workforce by providing scholarships to students who are from disadvantaged backgrounds and who demonstrate financial need. FNU will award 90 scholarships, valued at $15,000 each, over the four year grant period. Advanced Education Nursing Traineeship (AENT) Total award: $700,000 over two years (2014–2016) This award provides direct support to 280 students over the grant period. This program aims to increase the number of advanced education nurses trained to practice as primary care providers and/or nursing faculty to address the nurse faculty shortage. Priority is given to students who plan to practice in rural and/or medically underserved communities.

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Nurse Faculty Loan Program (NFLP) Total award: $205,900 over one year (2015–2016) This program allows FNU to provide loans to students in the DNP programs who plan to work as nurse faculty after graduation. Graduates can borrow funding from this revolving loan account managed by FNU and are eligible to have up to 85 percent of the loan cancelled in return for working as faculty at an accredited school of nursing.


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frontier . edu | 2016

Answer the call.


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Non-Profit Org US Postage PAID Permit No 1 Lexington, KY P.O. Box 528 | 195 School Street | Hyden, KY 41479 Phone (606) 672-2132 | Fax (606) 672-3776

Connect With Us‌

Denise Barrett Director of Development and Alumni Relations Denise.Barrett@frontier.edu

Angela Bailey Associate Director of Development and Alumni Relations Angela.Bailey@frontier.edu

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The Frontier Nursing University Office of Alumni Relations is here to support YOU! Our purpose is to find new and meaningful ways to engage and support Alumni, from graduation throughout your career. Alumni are an integral part of FNU’s development because you demonstrate the excellence of FNU in everyday practice and because you are our #1 recruiters and most loyal donors. We appreciate your commitment to FNU and we will continue to offer rewarding programs, with your support. Services are open to all graduates of FNU. We currently have over 5,000 alumni in all fifty states and in many countries around the world. We encourage you to explore the services, programs, and activities offered and become involved. There are several wonderful ways to stay in touch with friends and connected to FNU including reunions, conference receptions, case days, eNews, and our very active Facebook group. In order to take advantage of all member services, please contact alumniservices@frontier.edu to receive the e-newsletter or update your current contact information!

5/27/16 11:30 AM