When the College of Graduate and Professional Studies awarded degrees in December to the first graduates from the Doctor of Nursing Practice program, the achievement was remarkable not only for the recipients but also for Radford University.
“You have led us into the ranks of doctoral universities in the commonwealth of Virginia and by doing so have helped rewrite the very definition of education at Radford,” President Kyle said in a message to DeEtta Compton of Radford and Arneda Faye Lyons of Dublin after they completed work for their D.N.P. degrees in August. “Along with your colleagues and professors, you have raised the prestige and public profile of Radford University to the advantage of our future students and graduates. For that, we are all deeply grateful.”
Kimberly D. Hall of Christiansburg completed her D.N.P. course work in December and was honored with Compton and Lyons at a hooding ceremony during Winter Commencement 2011.
The D.N.P. program enrolled its first cohort of 32 students in August 2010 and is the only such university program in Virginia offered entirely online. It is also the only online program in Virginia that accepts post-baccalaureate nursing graduates for doctoral study.
The awarding of Radford’s first doctoral degrees “is a milestone in the history of the university and a huge honor,” said Kimberly F. Carter, director of the School of Nursing in the Waldron College of Health and Human Services. “We are proud of our first doctoral nurses and deeply grateful to everyone who made their success possible.”
In another milestone for the Waldron College, the first 10 Master of Occupational Therapy graduates were awarded their degrees in December.