News & Notes

Top of the Class

Students from Waldron College of Health and Human Services programs continue to excel in certification and licensure exams.

Master of Occupational Therapy (M.O.T.),
January 2017 - December 2018

Result: 95 percent pass rate
Test: National Board for Certification in Occupational Therapy (NBCOT)

Bachelor of Science in Nursing (B.S.N.), 2018
Composite: 98 percent first-time pass rate

Radford cohort: 100 percent first-time pass rate

Roanoke cohort: 96 percent first-time pass rate

Test: National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX), the examination for the licensing of nurses that is administered by the National Council of State Boards of Nursing (NCSBN)
Note: The 2018 national first-time pass rate for baccalaureate students: 91.57 percent, according to the NCSBN

Top of the Class

Master (M.A., M.S.) of Communication Sciences and Disorders (COSD), 2018

Result: 100 percent pass rates
Test: PRAXIS II, milestone toward earning the Certificate of Clinical Competence in Speech-Language Pathology (CCC-SLP)
Note: The fifth consecutive year COSD graduates achieved a 100 percent pass rate

Doctor of Physical Therapy (D.P.T.), 2018

Result: 100 percent first-time pass rate  
Test: National Physical Therapy Exam (NPTE), administered by the Federation of State Boards of Physical Therapy (FSBPT)

Radford has surpassed the national NCLEX first-time pass rate average for seven consecutive years.

Expanded nursing simulation center returns to campus

The Radford Clinical Simulation Center (CSC), now in its new home on the third floor of Cook Hall, has doubled in size and added capabilities that replicate the modern healthcare environment.

Radford University School of Nursing students now have increasingly immersive practical experiences in additional hospital rooms, exam rooms and interview rooms, and they debrief in larger, technology-rich spaces that are supported by a state-of-the-art computer infrastructure.

“The expansion of the CSC represents an exciting opportunity for the nursing program,” said School of Nursing Interim Director Iris Mullins, Ph.D. “The relocation and expansion bring efficiencies and synergies that enrich nursing students with virtual reality experiences that are important complements to their classroom and clinical experiences.”

The expansion marks the first-ever renovation of Radford’s CSC, formerly located in the Radford University Corporate Park, since its initial opening in 2006. The Radford CSC now includes two “wings” — a wing simulating the hospital environment with rooms devoted to obstetric, pediatric and medical/surgical care and a wing simulating a healthcare clinic and doctors’ offices.

The Cook Hall CSC also includes an apartment in which students work with patients, or actors who portray patients, to replicate the home healthcare environment.

“We can now provide more state-of-the-art sim education with faculty who are simulation experts,” said Cindy Cunningham ’88, M.S. ’97, CSC director. “Learning takes place in debriefing, and we have ample space and technology by which our students can review their work on their own and with faculty, plus an even more realistic environment.”

“The new nurse call system and BD Pyxis MedStations are typical of technology found in most acute care facilities and nursing homes. This technology makes our replication of a nurse’s environment even richer,” Cunningham said.

The BD Pyxis MedStation is an automated medication dispensing system that the CSC nursing students will work with as they transition into their clinical rotations and into practice. A nurse call system enables communication between patients and nurses to enhance quality of care.

Cunningham emphasized, “We can now provide our students with invaluable practical experiences that build their confidence, proficiency and clinical judgment in a safe environment.”

  1. Entrance to the Clinical Simulation Center (CSC) in Cook Hall
  2. Home healthcare kitchen and living room
  3. Home healthcare bathroom
  4. CSC doctor’s office
  5. A nursing student with an automated medication dispensing system, a key new addition to the CSC inventory of medical technology
  6. A team of nursing students with a simulation patient that is controlled by evidence-based, peer-reviewed programs and scenarios
  7. Transformative educational experiences within the CSC

A Community of Learners: Harvey Center opens in McConnell Library

George Harvey Sr.
George Harvey Sr.

Radford University officially unveiled its newest learning hub in fall 2018.

The Harvey Center is located on the fourth floor of McConnell Library and is an expansion of the Warren P. Self Learning Assistance Resource Center (LARC), formerly located in Walker Hall.

The center provides an array of helpful resources for both students and faculty, including small and private study areas, one-on-one mentoring, study groups, areas for group collaboration and workshops designed to help students become lifelong learners.

“We envision the Harvey Center as a place where students can connect to a community and a place for exploration and inquiry,” said Director Jessica Beckett, Ph.D. “It’s a hub to connect students and faculty to campus resources and bring the Radford community together.”

Dozens of peer mentors and undergraduate coaches are available at the center to help student-learners achieve academic success in all areas of study, from biology and math to the humanities.

The center is a result of Radford University’s 2018-2023 Strategic Plan, Embracing the Tradition and Envisioning the Future, and supports the University’s mission to provide all students the tools to address the social, economic and environmental issues confronting our region, nation and world.

Throughout several strategic plan discussions, students and faculty identified a need for an updated learning center. The LARC, explained Associate Provost for Academic Programs Jeanne Mekolichick, Ph.D., was an older model and, based on the current needs of students and faculty, that model needed to shift.

“The LARC was focused on helping students over those little speed bumps, but the Harvey Center is focused on helping students learn the tools that are needed to be successful in life,” Mekolichick said. “That broader skill development, self-efficacy, self-advocacy, working in teams — all of those pieces that will help our students in their professional lives, civic lives, family lives and so on. It’s a much broader, deeper vision of learning.”

The center is named after George Harvey Sr., a local businessperson, community leader and a longtime supporter of Radford University.

“Today, we’re standing in a space allocated to continue to provide these services, but now in an even greater capacity,” said Mekolichick at the unveiling event in October 2018. “The combination of the LARC with the Harvey Center will serve a larger number of students in a centralized location, thereby making a direct impact on our ability to assist our students throughout every challenge and opportunity in their college experience.”

Harvey attended the event with his wife, Juanita, and several of his children.

“Knowledge is so important in our lives,” Harvey told event attendees. “We cannot do anything without proper knowledge. There is one word in the vocabulary that is outstanding to me: decision. We make decisions all of the time. Without proper knowledge, you cannot make proper decisions. So, to me, knowledge is so important, and I’m hoping that’s exactly what this learning center will do — help all these young people to be able to have the knowledge to make all these decisions that will be a part of their life, and help them make good decisions. There are a lot of good opportunities out there if you make good decisions.”

Radford University rolls out new in-demand degrees

Radford University is offering three new undergraduate degrees and one doctoral degree that reflect the growing demand for skilled employees in the healthcare, technology and education industries.  

The State Council of Higher Education for Virginia recently approved the three undergraduate programs. The cybersecurity and sport management programs were launched in spring 2019, and the third program, in allied health sciences, will begin in fall 2019.


Radford University is the first public, four-year institution in Virginia to offer an undergraduate degree in cybersecurity. Offered through the Artis College of Science and Technology’s Department of Information Technology, the program is designed to help meet the anticipated demand of 3.5 million cybersecurity professionals by 2023.

The program leverages existing courses in information systems and computer science, in addition to several new courses, to produce a pipeline of tech-savvy graduates who are well prepared to design, implement, deploy and administer technological solutions to prevent and defend against cyberattacks.

Allied Health Sciences

The College of Education and Human Development’s Department of Health and Human Performance is offering a new degree in allied health sciences. Formerly a concentration, the program will prepare students for graduate and professional school and eventual entry into physical rehabilitation disciplines, such as physical or occupational therapy, exercise physiology, cardiac rehabilitation, chiropractic medicine, physician assistant or other advanced programs.

While many of these careers require an advanced degree, students graduating from the allied health sciences program can pursue immediate employment in settings such as health agencies, hospitals, health and fitness facilities and rehabilitation centers.

Sport Management

The Bachelor of Science in Sport Management is also administered by the Department of Health and Human Performance. The program will educate students about the theoretical and applied aspects of management as they pursue careers within the sport industry.

The new major will offer two concentrations: sport administration and coaching management. It will provide instruction in such aspects of sport management as sports facility management, professional writing, the sociocultural perspectives to sport management, ethical principles, budgeting, fundraising and economic analysis of sport activities, as well as marketing and promotion.


Radford University’s Doctor of Education program has been approved by the State Council of Higher Education for Virginia and will begin classes in January 2020.

The program will prepare new generations of executive-level leaders in education through coursework, field experiences and applied research to work collaboratively within their communities to improve student outcomes.

The 63-credit Ed.D. program is fully online, making it convenient for working professionals. The program meets the Virginia licensure requirements for the Division Superintendent endorsement.