WHEN I ASSUMED THE ROLE AS ACTING AND NOW INTERIM DEAN, I WAS COMMITTED TO CREATING A WARM AND WELCOMING ENVIRONMENT TO EMBRACE THE HEARTS AND MINDS OF EVERYONE WHO IS TOUCHED BY THE SCHOOL: FACULTY, STAFF, STUDENTS, DONORS, ALUMNI.
So it is no coincidence that this issue of the UCLA School of Nursing magazine is dedicated to the heart, both the amazing cardiovascular research that our faculty are conducting as well as the caring about the hearts and minds of our students, faculty and staff.
Nelson Mandela once said “A good head and a good heart are always a formidable combination” and here at the School we are embracing both. Creating a healthy, positive environment for faculty, staff and students is at the heart of our school. UC President Janet Napolitano made the commitment to cultivating a positive work environment as a cornerstone of her leadership and has directed each UC campus to do the same. UCLA, in turn, created the position of Vice Chancellor for Equity, Diversity and Inclusion and asked that each school and academic unit appoint an Equity Advisor – ours is Deborah Koniak-Griffin, Associate Dean for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion. Additionally, I appointed an Assistant Director for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion, our staff member Rhonda Flenoy Younger, which was announced in our Spring 2016 magazine. We are one of the few schools on campus to have included staff leadership. We have and will continue to host activities to enhance our climate including provocative films, moderated discussions and cultural celebrations. Last month we celebrated the rich diversity of the many Asian cultures with a Harvest Festival. We also are collaborating with the UCLA Health “Counting on U” campaign which is fostering a healthy, caring, respectful practice and learning environment for healthcare professional students and staff at UCLA.
Another way we are ensuring a positive environment and a healthy heart and mind is by embracing the goals and activities of the Healthy Campus Initiative (HCI) which is committed to making UCLA the healthiest campus in America. HCI consists of four “pods” Breathe Well (which led the implementation of UCLA’s smoke and tobacco-free policy), Eat Well, Move Well and Mind Well. Last year we took a mindful break and enjoyed the beautiful music of guest musicians from the Herb Albert School of Music, who serenaded us in the lobby. This Fall we began the first faculty and staff meeting with an accordian concert! One of our faculty, Barbara Demman, a trained facilitator, is offering morning mindful meditation sessions to students, staff and faculty to combat stress every Friday for 30 minutes.
Finally, I want to offer heartfelt thanks to our alumni and donors who continue to show gratitude and care for the School by their generous donations.
” I AM PROUD TO BE PART OF A SCHOOL THAT HAS SO MUCH HEART. “