MIDDLESEX COUNTY — Michelle L. Foley, director of the joint nursing program of Middlesex County College and Raritan Bay Medical Center, has been inducted into the National League for Nursing’s Academy of Nursing Education, with the credential of “Fellow.” She joins the academy’s 117 fellows representing nursing schools and programs throughout the United States.
Professor Foley is retiring at the end of June from the program but will continue to stay active in the profession.
“The National League for Nursing relies on these accomplished individuals as allies in our efforts to prepare the numbers of excellent nurse educators we need if we are to eliminate the shortage of nurses plaguing America’s health care institutions,” said Beverly A. Malone, chief executive officer of the National League for Nursing. “Nurse faculty and colleagues from other fields who contribute to excellence in nursing education and to the preparation of a nursing workforce that meets the needs of our ever-changing health care environment deserve this public recognition and the gratitude of all who are eager to elevate the status of the profession.”
The National League for Nursing (NLN) established the Academy of Nursing Education in 2007 to foster excellence in nursing education by recognizing and capitalizing on the wisdom of nurse educators who have made sustained and significant contributions to nursing education. Fellows provide visionary leadership in nursing education and in the Academy of Nursing Education and support the vision of the NLN to promote standards of excellence in nursing education that will increase the number of graduates from all types of nursing programs. Fellows serve as important role models and resources for new educators and for those who aspire to become nurse educators.
The fellowships were awarded by the NLN Board of Governors, the oversight body of the Academy of Nursing Education. The induction of new fellows and a meeting of fellows in the Academy of Nursing Education will be held in conjunction with the NLN’s annual Education Summit in Anaheim, CA in September.
As a newly named fellow, Professor Foley has been lauded for her innovative teaching and learning strategies; nursing education research; faculty development; academic leadership; and promotion of public policy that advances nursing education.
Professor Foley served for four years as the president of the New Jersey League for Nursing (NJLN), two years as president-elect, and she is now the treasurer, a position that will run through 2013. As president, she energized the board, created an annual board retreat, worked to clarify the NJLN vision, update its strategic plan, delineate its goals, define measureable and time-sensitive objectives, and increase board member accountability for outcomes. She speaks with clarity on issues, promotes open communication, and has led with drive, commitment, enthusiasm and humor.
In 2010 she won a national award for leadership from the National League for Nursing. Tracey Siegel, a faculty member in the nursing department, nominated Professor Foley for that honor.
“Michelle was very inclusive,” Professor Siegel said. “She feels strongly that all levels of nursing need to be at the table when we talk about the future of the profession. She is very supportive of all nursing education programs whether they are baccalaureate degree, associate degree or LPN programs.”
She also said Professor Foley’s excellent leadership skills were demonstrated as president of the New Jersey League for Nursing.
“During her tenure as president, she made great strides in increasing the visibility of the NJLN in the state,” Professor Siegel said.
Professor Foley has also participated in two medical mission trips to Ghana, West Africa in 2010 and 2011.
She is the former director of nursing education at the Charles E. Gregory School of Nursing, assistant director of nursing in the special care units at Raritan Bay Medical Center, nursing instructor at St. Peter’s Medical Center School of Nursing, and staff nurse at St. Peter’s Medical Center, where she began her career. She has also written numerous articles and chapters in nursing publications.