New Dean For Nursing | Beaufort County Now | ECU Board of Trustees names dean, confers degrees

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    Publisher's Note: This post appears here courtesy of ECU News Services. The author of this post is Ken Buday.

The ECU Board of Trustees met in the Main Campus Student Center on Thursday and Friday. (ECU photo by Rhett Butler)


    During the regular meeting of the East Carolina University Board of Trustees on Friday, Dr. Bimbola Akintade was named dean of the College of Nursing effective July 1. He will succeed Dr. Sylvia Brown, who has led the college as dean since 2009.

    Akintade comes to ECU from the University of Maryland School of Nursing, where he is an associate professor in the Organizational Systems and Adult Health Department and has served since 2020 as the associate dean of the Master of Science in Nursing program. He is engaged in clinical practice as an acute care nurse practitioner in the Post Anesthesia Care and the Trauma Surgical Intensive Care units at the University of Maryland Medical Center.

    "I am so very pleased that Dr. Akintade has agreed to join us as the next dean of ECU's College of Nursing. He will help us to build upon an excellent college," said Dr. Ron Mitchelson, interim vice chancellor of ECU's Division of Health Sciences. "It is clear from our interactions that he is an impressive leader with tremendous vision and superior capacity for strategy. I know that Pirate nurses will be in very good hands."

    Akintade joined the faculty at the University of Maryland in 2011 and has since held a variety of leadership roles, including six years as program director for the Adult Gerontology Acute Care Nurse Practitioner/Clinical Nurse Specialist Doctor of Nursing Practice Program at the University of Maryland School of Nursing, during which he transitioned the program from the master's to the doctoral level.

    He will lead a college that boasts a variety of programs, including the Bachelor of Science in nursing, an RN to BSN program, Master of Science in nursing programs, the Doctor of Nursing Practice program and doctoral program. ECU's College of Nursing produces more newly licensed nurses than any other four-year institution in North Carolina.

    "I look forward to joining a strong team of administrators, faculty, staff, students and the entire Pirate Nation to extend the legacy of East Carolina University's College of Nursing into the future by positively impacting the health of rural underserved regions, the state of North Carolina and beyond," Akintade said.

    Akintade earned his doctorate in 2011 from the University of Maryland as well as a Master of Healthcare Administration/Healthcare Organizational Leadership the same year from the University of Maryland University College. In 2012, he earned a Master of Business Administration in international healthcare business from the University of Maryland University College. He earned a Master of Science degree in 2005 with a focus on the acute care nurse practitioner/clinical nurse specialist role and a Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree in 2003.

    Akintade's research interests include fostering academic practice partnerships and the use of high-fidelity simulation in clinical practice.

    Brown, whose nursing and leadership experience at ECU spans 41 years, was instrumental in the growth and expansion of the ECU College of Nursing's programs and facilities, and their impact on North Carolina as both a faculty member and administrator. She presented the college's impressive accomplishments during her last Board of Trustees committee meeting on Thursday afternoon.

    "Dr. Brown leaves an impressive legacy. She and her colleagues have built one of the very best colleges in the nation," Michelson said. "The impact of her work over the decades as a faculty member and as dean for the last 14 years will be felt by students and their patients for decades to come. Dean Brown is worthy of our deep appreciation and our collective admiration."

    Additional business

    In other business, the board approved the conferral of degrees for 3,912 students. Next Friday's commencement will celebrate the accomplishments of more than 4,600 spring and summer graduates from undergraduate and graduate programs.

    Chancellor Philip Rogers recognized the contributions of three Pirates - Drs. Mitchelson and Michael Van Scott, who will retire at the end of June, and Dr. Grant Hayes, who will end his service as interim provost in July.

    "Each leader has served with distinction, with integrity, with a steadfast commitment to our mission, with grace, with good humor, and with the one ECU lens that permits them to be true institutionalists," Rogers said. "I am especially grateful to them."

    The trustees approved an all-funds budget for fiscal year 2023 totalling $1 billion. Stephanie Coleman, vice chancellor of administration and finance, said the $43 million increase from the fiscal year 2021 budget includes the 2.5% salary increase approved by the North Carolina General Assembly and the rising cost of employee benefits, as well as operating costs for the new Life Sciences and Biotechnology Building.

    BSA Life Structures of Raleigh was selected for the design of the new medical education building on the recommendation of the finance and facilities committee. The planning, design and construction of the facility will take up to five years.

    The board approved advanced planning funding for renovations to Fleming Residence Hall, a $5.2 million project that includes a new HVAC system and modernization and accessibility renovations to the building's bathrooms.

    On the recommendation of the university affairs committee, the trustees moved the functions of the Center for STEM Education under the administration of the College of Education and removed its designation as a UNC System-designated center.

    The university affairs committee also heard an update on student enrollment and recruitment efforts from Hayes and Stephanie Whaley, assistant vice chancellor and director of admissions.

    Deposits for new students are due May 1. ECU is trending similar to fall 2019 enrollment figures at this time, Whaley said.

    ECU saw a 48% increase in the number of prospective students who attended admitted student events this year compared to last year. More than 1,900 prospective students and a total of about 6,000 attended Pirates Aboard on March 26.

    Whaley said there are 7,000 fewer high school graduates in North Carolina this year compared to last year, which is driving robust competition among state universities. ECU officials have developed a comprehensive plan that includes digital marketing, social media and Pirate swag to attract students and parents. A ShipMates website just for admitted students also debuted.

    The committee also heard an update on the growth of ECU patents and commercialization, and a presentation from the winner of the fifth annual Pirate Entrepreneurship Challenge. Jamerus Payton, an MBA student at ECU, is a Greenville native and graduate of D.H. Conley High School and North Carolina A&T, who operates Carolina Chicken and Waffles.

    Upon the recommendation of the athletics and advancement committee, Matt Crisp was appointed to serve a three-year term on the ECU Endowment Fund Board, and Therapy Room 207 in the Family Therapy Clinic Building was named in honor of Dr. David Dosser Jr.

    The board also approved the reappointment of Pam Baldwin, Brad Congleton, Lewis Gale and Toby Thomas to the ECU Board of Visitors, as well as the appointment of new members Christina Bowen, Tom Campbell, Scott Chase, Richard Cobb, Terrance Copper, Barnanne Creech, Phil Kirk, Nichole Kloss, Phil Tetterton, Andrew Wasilick and Scott West. Chair Alisa Chapman, vice chair Preston Mitchell and secretary Dutch Holland were approved as officers.

    The next regular meeting of the ECU Board of Trustees will be July 14-15 at the ECU Life Sciences and Biotechnology Building.
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