GREENSBORO (July 21, 2021) – Hiring and keeping nursing faculty isn’t a challenge just at community colleges.
“One of the things that vexes us is that while there’s great student demand for spots in nursing schools, the supply of nursing faculty is actually quite constricted,” UNC Greensboro Chancellor Franklin Gilliam says in the accompanying video.
It’s not rocket science – skilled nurses can simply make more working in, say, a hospital setting, Gilliam says. And the most challenging hire of all is a dean for a nursing school, though UNCG recently hired Debra Barksdale as its new Dean of the School of Nursing.
HEIDI KROWCHUK, the Interim Dean at the UNCG School of Nursing and Associate Dean for Academic Programs, offers a case study in what it takes to retain nursing faculty.
Certified registered nurse anesthetists who teach UNCG anesthesia students could easily make $300,000 to $400,000 a year in practice, she said.
“In order to get anesthesia faculty … we’ve made an agreement that they work for us 100%. We have a specific salary. But they are also given one day a week to go practice. They keep that money. So it really augments their salary from us, because the state just can’t support that,” Krowchuk says.
It’s not unlike police officers who moonlight as security guards to make ends meet.
While UNCG and the UNC System understand the competitive pressures, Krowchuk says, “There are people across campus who say, ‘Your faculty are getting paid that much?’ Yeah, they are. They’re worth their weight in gold. And we can’t do our program without that.”
Krowchuk is matter-of-fact about the economic realities.
“When you think about inequity in salaries, we’re usually an exception. But that’s how it is,” she says.
Glossary of Nursing Terms: