2019-2020 Samford University Graduate Catalog 
    Jul 21, 2024  
2019-2020 Samford University Graduate Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Ida Moffett School of Nursing

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Nena F. Sanders, Ralph W. Beeson Dean and Professor
Jane S. Martin, Senior Associate Dean; Professor
Gretchen S. McDaniel, Associate Dean of Graduate Programs, Professor
Terri M. Cahoon, Chair, Department of Nurse Anesthesia; Associate Professor
Jill L. Cunningham, Chair, Family Nurse Practitioner Department; Professor
Lora R. Shelton, Interim Chair, Undergraduate Program; Associate Professor
Cynthia G. Berry, Director, Clinical Partnerships and Clinical Education; Professor


Amy Branyon Bigham, Professor
Ellen Banks Buckner, Professor
Jennifer J. Coleman, Professor
Cynthia G. Cortes, Professor
Stephanie D. Wynn, Professor
Andrea W. Collins, Associate Professor
Lisa E. Gurley, Associate Professor
Lisa E. Herbinger, Associate Professor
Mary Annette Hess, Associate Professor
Jane T. Holston, Associate Professor
Jillyn N. Pence, Associate Professor
Vicki W. Rochester, Associate Professor
Amanda L. Barron, Assistant Professor
Pamela E. Carver, Assistant Professor
Sherri H. Chatman, Assistant Professor
Tracey K. Dick, Assistant Professor
Lee M. Hardin, Assistant Professor
Nina R. Harvey, Assistant Professor
Julie A. Head, Assistant Professor
Jill B. Hightower, Assistant Professor
Kristen C. Johnston, Assistant Professor
Moniaree Parker Jones, Assistant Professor
Maria D. Ledbetter, Assistant Professor
Megan R. Mileski, Assistant Professor
Tameka D. Pritchett, Assistant Professor
Tonya D. Shanahan, Assistant Professor
Amy C. Snow, Assistant Professor
Rebecca J. Warr, Assistant Professor
Ashley B. York, Assistant Professor
Kelli R. Burdette, Instructor
Jennifer W. Childress, Instructor
Havilah S. Couvillion, Instructor
Meagan B. Deese, Instructor|
Lori H. Harrison, Instructor
Melanie Wise Henningsen, Instructor
Lauren H. Jones, Instructor
Sandra L. McMichael, Instructor
Brandy B. Mobley, Instructor
Christa Moore, Instructor
Ashley McLeod Turner, Instructor
Angela Wilson, Instructor


Rich in tradition, the Ida Moffett School of Nursing was founded in 1922 by the Birmingham Baptist Association as a hospital-based diploma program. In 1955, the school became the first program in Alabama to achieve national accreditation and it has remained fully accredited throughout its existence. The nursing program transferred to Samford University in 1973 following a merger agreement with the Baptist Health System to offer associate and baccalaureate degrees in nursing. In 1988, the school moved to its current home on the Samford campus. Extraordinary growth and transformation have occurred since the school’s inception, all while remaining focused on preparing students to provide exceptional, patient-centered care. Pass rates for graduates taking national licensure and certification examinations exceed national averages. The Ida Moffett School of Nursing offers a variety of options for obtaining a bachelor of science in nursing, a master of science in nursing, or a doctor of nursing practice degree.

Accreditation and Approval

The baccalaureate degree in nursing, master’s degree in nursing, and doctor of nursing practice degree at Samford University is regionally accredited and also accredited by The Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE), 655 K Street NW, Suite 750, Washington, DC, 20001; phone (202) 887-6791. In addition, the nurse anesthesia program is accredited by the Council on Accreditation of Nurse Anesthesia Educational Programs (COA), 222 South Prospect Avenue, Suite 304, Park Ridge, Illinois, 60068-4010; phone (847) 692-7050. The School of Nursing is also approved by the Alabama Board of Nursing.

Curricular Options

The Ida Moffett School of Nursing offers a unique curricular approach that allows students several choices in pursuing their graduate and doctoral-level nursing education. These options are:

Master of Science in Nursing (M.S.N.): The M.S.N. program prepares advanced practice nurses in a variety of specialty areas. Graduates are prepared as family nurse practitioners, nurse anesthetists, and nurse educators.

RN to M.S.N.: The RN-M.S.N. option provides an opportunity for associate degree and diploma-prepared nurses to obtain the M.S.N. online within one program of study.

Post-Master of Science in Nursing Certificate: The post-master’s certificate is available to those who already possess the M.S.N. degree but who wish to receive additional graduate level instruction.

RN to D.N.P.: The RN-M.S.N. option provides an opportunity for associate degree and diploma-prepared nurses to obtain the D.N.P online within one program of study.

Doctor of Nursing Practice (D.N.P.): The D.N.P. program will prepare clinicians (nurse practitioners, nurse anesthetists, and clinical nurse specialists) and nurse administrators for leadership roles, evidence-based practice, and to fully implement the emerging science and practice innovations in health care.

Program Goals

The goals of the Ida Moffett School of Nursing are as follows:

  1. Recruit qualified nurse educators and staff who are committed to the mission and philosophy of Samford University and the Ida Moffett School of Nursing.
  2. Promote professional development of faculty through mentoring and collegial relationships and administrative support.
  3. Recruit and retain qualified students who have demonstrated high standards of scholarship, outstanding personal character, and serious educational aims.
  4. Maintain a qualified and diversified student body by mentoring students and providing financial aid support.
  5. Provide an environment that promotes scholarship, critical thinking, and responsiveness to community needs.
  6. Create a Christian environment in which diverse student populations may develop an academic and social network that supports their uniqueness and promotes professionalism and lifelong learning.
  7. Integrate the liberal arts, sciences, and professional nursing education in order for graduates to make positive contributions to society.
  8. Develop individuals who are competent in the application of knowledge and skills and who possess values and attitudes consistent with the nursing profession.
  9. Prepare graduates to contribute to the advancement of professional nursing and the improvement of the health care system.

Code of Ethical and Professional Conduct

Students in the School of Nursing must adhere to standards of conduct specified in the Samford University Student Handbook as well as the Samford University Student Guide to Academic Integrity, and certain standards of behavior appropriate for all health professionals. Students shall comply with legal, moral, and legislative standards that determine acceptable behavior of the nurse. Noncompliance may be cause for suspension/dismissal from the nursing school and denial of permission by individual state boards of nursing to take the NCLEX-RN examination or be approved as an advanced practice nurse.

Students documented to have demonstrated unethical, unprofessional, or unsafe conduct merit immediate probation or dismissal from the nursing school. Grievances, which result from students failing to adhere to appropriate personal and professional conduct, will be considered by utilizing the grievance process in the Ida Moffett School of Nursing Student Handbook and the University Catalog.

School of Nursing Expenses

In addition to tuition, fees, and room and board costs (if applicable), students are responsible for other costs associated with nursing courses. Costs include uniforms/lab coats, books, medical equipment, yearly physical examinations, required immunizations, required drug testing, background checks, certification in basic life support, a personal laptop computer (with webcam and microphone), testing software, software for electronic medical records, and required health insurance. Students are responsible for providing transportation to and from clinical experiences.

Personal Health Insurance

Students in the School of Nursing are required to provide proof of current personal health insurance coverage. Each semester, students in the IMSON are automatically enrolled in the University sponsored student health insurance plan. There is a charge for this coverage. To have the charge removed from their Samford account, nursing students must provide proof of insurance by completing the insurance waiver at: http://www.firststudent.com/school_page/samforduniversity/home-samford-university/

International Students: Based upon federal regulations and University policy, all F and J visa holders are required to carry insurance that meets certain coverage requirements. Information about specific policy carriers, minimum coverage, and premium costs is available from the Office of Global Engagement at (205) 726-4334.

Liability Insurance

Professional liability insurance is provided by Samford University. Personal professional liability insurance for clinical practice, while not required, is highly recommended for all nursing students. Nurse anesthesia students are not covered under the Samford University insurance and must purchase their own professional liability coverage through the AANA insurance program.

Clinical Resources

Clinical experiences for the School of Nursing are provided in Birmingham-area hospitals and selected community health clinics and settings. All clinical facilities are accredited by the appropriate agencies. In addition, a wide variety of agencies are utilized for graduate student experiences including, but not limited to primary care facilities, schools of nursing, acute care facilities, and managed care organizations.

Required Health Data

The student must have completed and submitted all necessary documentation required by the University, the School of Nursing, and all clinical agencies before starting clinical courses. The following health data must be current: 

  1. Health Form: Prior to starting a clinical course, or registering for graduate courses, students must have a College of Health Sciences health form (updated yearly) on file.
  2. Basic Life Support (BLS) Certification: BLS is a requirement for all clinical nursing courses. The School of Nursing does not accept online courses. Certification must be updated every two years. This certification must be obtained through the American Heart Association. This certification must include one-rescuer and two-rescuer cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) of adult, child, and infant. Evidence of a current card issued by the American Heart Association is required. 
  3. Rubella immunity: Each student must submit evidence of rubella immunity.
  4. Varicella (Chicken Pox): Students who have not had the chicken pox must complete the two-step varicella vaccine prior to completing the first clinical course in order to progress to the second clinical nursing course. If a student refuses the vaccine, a waiver must be completed, signed, and filed. 
  5. Influenza immunization: Each student must submit an influenza immunization, annually, in the fall semester.
  6. Hepatitis B: The School of Nursing requires each student to take the Hepatitis B vaccine. University Health Services offers the vaccine, or the student may consult a physician or local health department for the vaccination. If a student refuses the vaccination series, a waiver form must be completed, signed, and filed.
  7. Mantoux Tuberculin Skin Test: The School of Nursing requires each student to have a Mantoux tuberculin skin test annually. Students who test positive must meet current CDC guidelines.
  8. Drug Testing and Background Checks: All graduate nursing students are drug tested and background checked at the beginning of the program. Nurse anesthesia students are required to submit to a background check prior to admission. Additionally, all students may be tested for cause or clinical affiliation requirements. Students are responsible for all costs associated with the background check. (See School of Nursing Student Handbook for Substance Abuse Policy and Procedure.)
  9. Additional Requirements: Clinical agencies may place additional health requirements on students affiliating with that agency. Clinical instructors will notify students when applicable.

Departments and Program Offerings


Graduate Nursing

Go to information for Graduate Nursing.



Certificate - Graduate

Nurse Anesthesia

Go to information for Nurse Anesthesia.



Doctoral Nursing

Go to information for Doctoral Nursing.