Langley, BC—While TWU's Barbara Pesut sees the pending shortage of healthcare leaders as a major BC nursing crisis, she also sees hope in the students that come through the leadership-focused training at TWU. Pesut, a Langley resident who has taught at TWU for the past five years, has been named the University's new director of Nursing and looks forward to helping her students discover their leadership potential.
"Over the next decade a large percentage of nurses in leadership positions will be retiring, so Trinity Western's focus on leadership will contribute directly to the solution for that crisis," says Pesut, who worked as a critical care nurse in the Royal Columbian Hospital between 1985-1995. "It's our goal to give our students the vision for servant leadership by matching their gifts with different kinds of leadership roles—whether it be as clinicians, educators, researchers or administrators—and then starting to prepare them for those roles."
Pesut recognizes that nursing students need to be prepared to meet the specific challenges of the current healthcare system, but she knows from experience that while trends change, there is no substitute for high quality education that blends a recognition of current healthcare issues with the foundational principles of nursing.
"On the one hand you are always keeping in mind current trends and crises in healthcare, but on the other hand, there are foundational principles that never change," says Pesut, who serves on the Educational Approval Committee of the Registered Nurses Association of British Columbia. "Change is so rapid in health care, so instead of being driven by trends, we strive to build a strong program that considers current issues while never sacrificing quality."
This blend, together with a focus on servant leadership training, has been a formula that has helped students impress the nursing professionals and clients with whom students work. And according to Pesut, the quality of her students continues to impress her, too.
" A big part of it is because their attitudes are spectacular—they're servants," says Pesut. “When they come into the chaos of healthcare, our students have an incredible ability to bring together competence with a caring and loving attitude."
Trinity Western University, located in Langley, B.C., is a privately funded Christian liberal arts university enrolling 2,850 students this year. With a broad-based, liberal arts and sciences curriculum, the University offers undergraduate degrees in 34 major areas ranging from business, education and computer science to biology and nursing, and 12 graduate degrees including counselling psychology, theology and administrative leadership.
Last Updated: 2012-08-21