MACON, Ga. – Mercer University Georgia Baptist College of Nursing Assistant Professor Tammy Barbé is one of eight nursing faculty from across the country selected to participate in the second annual Faculty Policy Intensive hosted by the American Association of Colleges of Nursing (AACN), March 24-27, in Washington, D.C.
The fully-funded, four-day immersion program for faculty of AACN-member schools is designed to enhance existing knowledge of nursing policy and advocacy through sessions that will strengthen understanding of the legislative process and the dynamic relationships between federal departments and agencies, national nursing organizations and the individual advocate.
At the conclusion of the event, participants will put their new advocacy skills to use as AACN Faculty Policy Fellows. Last year's inaugural class of Fellows represented nursing schools at institutions such as the University of Alabama and the University of Virginia. Dr. Barbé is the first Fellow from an institution in the state of Georgia.
"I will bring back the knowledge and skills learned in this program and share that knowledge with my faculty members, ensuring that the topic of policy and advocacy is threaded throughout our undergraduate and graduate curriculum," said Dr. Barbé. "I also wish to take the information that I receive and assist faculty across the nation to implement activities that foster advocacy and political involvement for themselves, their students and their institutions."
Dr. Barbé will have the opportunity to meet with leadership from federal departments and agencies, network with Capitol Hill staff, attend workshops to strengthen and refine communication skills for effective advocacy, and engage with representatives from national professional nursing organizations on current health care policy issues and the role of the collective voice.
Dr. Barbé is coordinator of the Georgia Baptist College of Nursing's Health Care Policy Issues graduate course, which begins each spring with students attending the Georgia Nurses Association Legislative Day at the State Capitol, and focuses on sociopolitical and economic issues that influence health care, access, quality and cost. Approximately 45 clinical nurse specialists, family nurse practitioners and nurse educators annually complete this course designed to encourage students to become more active and engaged in the political aspect of health care.
"Dr. Barbé is a very organized, driven and conscientious educator with high ethical and moral standards. She is admired by her students, as well as her faculty peers, for her comprehensive approach to teaching," said Dr. Linda A. Streit, dean of the Georgia Baptist College of Nursing.
"Knowledge gained from this experience can not only be incorporated into specific coursework within our own program, but will also serve as a launching pad for her to become more involved in nursing legislation efforts. These efforts include the Georgia Nursing Leadership Coalition, the Center to Champion Nursing for America, as well as other national health care endeavors."
After earning both bachelor's and master's degrees from the University of South Alabama, Dr. Barbé earned her Ph.D. in nursing education from the University of Northern Colorado. She has more than 10 years of teaching experience, preceded by a career in critical care nursing with a focus on cardiovascular nursing.
Dr. Barbé is a member of The Honor Society of Nursing, Sigma Theta Tau International (STTI), and is current president of the Pi Gamma Chapter. She has received certification in nursing education from the National League for Nursing. Her research interests include the professional development of students, nurses and nursing faculty.
"As an educator, I strive to foster an increase in student awareness and participation in the policy process. In the health policy courses I teach, my intention is that students complete coursework with a belief that they are capable of influencing health policy and a passion to use that knowledge to effect change," said Dr. Barbé.
About the Georgia Baptist College of Nursing
Founded in 1902 as a school of nursing, the Georgia Baptist College of Nursing is the oldest nursing program in Georgia. Over its 111-year history, the College has graduated more than 7,200 nurses. Since its founding, the College remains dedicated to educating the person, fostering the passion and shaping the future of nursing. The College merged with Mercer University in 2001 and offers a Bachelor of Science in Nursing, a Master of Science in Nursing, a Doctor of Nursing Practice and a Ph.D. in nursing. nursing.mercer.edu