Until recently, the scarcity of bedside nurses has obscured another critical shortage. Growth in the ranks of nursing faculty is not keeping pace with declines due to faculty retirements and a growing demand for nursing education. According to the National League for Nursing, an estimated 92,000 qualified applicants to entry-level nursing programs were rejected in 2005.
The primary reason cited: a shortage of faculty.
State, regional, and local initiatives that strive to reduce the barriers to becoming a nurse educator and to promote curriculum reform and new educational delivery methods are succeeding in expanding nursing program capacity and encouraging more nurses to choose faculty careers. This brief profiles promising collaborations that states and educational systems might replicate and examines the federal contribution to addressing the nursing faculty shortage.