School of Nursing

Innovative leaders transforming health.

VISION: The UAB School of Nursing, as part of a research university and academic health center, shapes patient-centered health care by preparing recognized nurse leaders who excel as clinicians, researchers and educators, in Alabama, nationally and internationally.

STRATEGIC PLAN SUMMARY: We stand proud as part of the premier academic health science center in a progressive health system, located in one of the leading diverse universities in the nation — the University of Alabama at Birmingham. In keeping with our longstanding commitment of collaboration across the university’s mission pillars of teaching, research and service, our Strategic Plan has exciting synergy with UAB’s vision to be a world-renowned research university and medical center — a first choice for education and health care, the IOM’s Future of Nursing Report and the preferred academic medical center of the 21st century (AMC21), the Strategic Plan for UAB Medicine.

Innovative Programs

Goal: Leading the transformation of nursing’s workforce: The UAB School of Nursing consistently ranks among the top nursing schools nationally by US News and World Report for its pioneering hybrid graduate specialty programs. Similarly, the SON is the leading producer of baccalaureate, master's and doctoral degree nurses in Alabama and the Southeast.


  • Expand interprofessional education and simulation experiences for all prelicensure and graduate-level students.
  • Increase enrollment in targeted areas by 25 percent.
  • Demonstrate excellence in student and program outcomes.
  • Develop and implement cutting-edge signature programs to meet the changing needs of the health care system.
  • Achieve greater recognition as one of the preferred schools of nursing in the nation.

Sustainable Scholarship

Goal: Leading the discovery of knowledge that translates into better health and quality of life: In the past five years, the UAB School of Nursing’s sustained scholarship has increased from under $2 million annually to nearly $8 million annually. While funding has improved substantially, the complexity of health care demands that we discover and apply the best evidence-based nursing from bench to bedside to community.


  • Move SON to the top 20 NIH-funded schools of nursing.
  • Recruit promising mid-career funded research faculty with focus on signature programs.
  • Leverage existing endowed chairs and professorships to recruit research teams in signature programs.
  • Create two additional endowed chair/professor research team positions.
  • Develop collaborative research partnerships with other nursing schools and with UAB Hospital and Health System, the Birmingham Veterans Affairs Medical Center, and Children’s of Alabama.

Valuable Resources

Goal: Developing our assets to achieve strategic priorities: Donors make critical investments in UAB School of Nursing undergraduate and graduate students, faculty, facility improvements, and special collections. The school’s interactions with collaborative partners — including UAB Hospital — with designated magnet status for nursing excellence, contribute to the development of its most treasured resources: students, faculty, staff, alumni, boards and community.


  • Enhance and expand School of Nursing building with $15 million in philanthropic funding.
  • Increase endowed chairs and professorships with $5 million in philanthropic funding.
  • Increase scholarship and program support to attract the best and brightest students with $10 million in philanthropic funding.

Collaborative Partnerships

Goal: Improving health through new models for access and delivery of patient care: Using the collective experience in the UAB School of Nursing, partnerships are created to advance interprofessional teaching, research and service that broaden students and faculty, opening opportunities for collaborative programs, shared resources, faculty practice, care redesign, professional development, global partnerships and delivering care to underserved populations.


  • Continue to grow faculty practice opportunities with an emphasis on team-based, collaborative models and the growing need for chronic and transitional care.
  • Expand the reach of the SON by leading signature high-quality, innovative programs at home and around the globe.
  • Expand partnerships with community colleges, hospitals for the RN to BSN/MSN programs.
  • Collaborate with the UAB Health System and other key state stakeholders to develop new care models to utilize advanced practice nurses (NPs, nurse anesthetists, CNLs, nurse executives) to improve health care access and quality to better meet the health care needs of Alabamians.
  • Partner with selected underserved communities to improve health outcomes through investment in interprofessional opportunities for teaching, research, practice and service.

Global Leadership

Goal: Impacting health locally and globally: The UAB School of Nursing’s leadership stretches from Birmingham, throughout Alabama and the Southern region to the national level, and international sites such as Latin America and Africa, where the school partners to build nursing capacity and develop knowledge to improve health and well-being. The need for nursing leaders to help forge creative change to advance health locally and globally remains a high-priority need.


  • Lead local and global efforts to reduce health disparities by improving the quantity, diversity, distribution and quality of the nursing workforce.
  • Grow sustained partnerships locally and globally to build nursing capacity and develop knowledge to improve health and well-being.
  • Sustain the UAB SON PAHO/WHOCC signature program.