Cardinal Stritch announces new name for college of nursing

To better reflect its academic offerings in health sciences fields, Fox Point-based Cardinal Stritch University has renamed its school of nursing, long known as the Ruth S. Coleman College of Nursing.

The new name, the Ruth S. Coleman College of Nursing and Health Sciences, modifies the former and also responds to community health care needs, said James Loftus, Ph.D., president of the Fox Point-based university.

“This name change signifies that the university is answering the call of the community,” Loftus said. “After more than three decades of offering exemplary nursing programs at the associate, bachelor’s and master’s level, Stritch is responding to the needs of the Milwaukee community with innovative programs in health sciences, starting with the Bachelor of Science in Respiratory Therapy Completion program.”

That program is the first of its kind in Wisconsin, according to Cardinal Stritch, and is the first of a variety of new health sciences programs being developed in the college. The program helps respiratory therapists currently in practice advance their career paths by bolstering their credentials with a bachelor’s degree.

While associate degree programs in respiratory therapy are offered by other institutions throughout the state, Cardinal Stritch’s new program is the first with a bachelor’s degree option.

“Due to the increasing complexity of health care and federal regulation changes, the health care community is asking for respiratory therapists to be prepared at the baccalaureate level,” said Kelly Dries, Ph.D., dean of the college. “Stritch is offering practicing respiratory therapists the first opportunity for advancement beyond an associate degree within Wisconsin, which is an excellent start to the Ruth S. Coleman College of Nursing and Health Sciences.”

The program, available in a flexible online format and also an optional classroom model, is designed to take two years for students to complete.

Along with developing the new program, Cardinal Stritch has established an articulation agreement with the seven state technical colleges that award associate degrees in respiratory therapy.

Cardinal Stritch’s school of nursing has been offering courses since 1980. The school was named after nursing benefactor Ruth Coleman in 2003.

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