Frontier School of Midwifery and Family Nursing
Officially Became Frontier Nursing University on July 1, 2011
Honoring our past, focusing on our future!
Message from the President
Dr. Susan Stone
DNSc, CNM, FACNM
Closely mirroring the sequential stages of human development: from birth, through childhood, adolescence and to the reaching of full adulthood; the Frontier Nursing Service and the Frontier School have evolved over the past 85+ years. In order to better reflect our organization's commitment to the legacy of the Frontier Nursing Service and the Frontier School's graduate level programs, the School plans to officially change its name to Frontier Nursing University on July 1, 2011.
Frontier Nursing University will continue to carry out the mission of caring for women and families in rural and underserved areas. Through our graduates in Kentucky, the United States, and beyond, we will spread the mission and vision of our founder, Mary Breckinridge, to the "wide neighborhoods of men." Close to 1,100 students are currently enrolled in either the Master of Science in Nursing or Doctor of Nursing Practice degree programs offered by the Frontier School within its unique melding of superb online course offerings and real-world practicum.
This change in name represents a milestone in the history of our institution: we are a University - recognized for our outstanding graduate degree programs - both domestically and worldwide. We've just been honored by US News and World Report as being ranked within the top 15 of nurse-midwifery and family nurse practitioner programs in the USA and ranked within the top 50 on the list of graduate schools of nursing nationwide. The evolution of the name of our institution reflects both the amazing 'chronicle' of our past, as well as the incredible opportunities which lie in our future. All of these milestones are directly attributable to the far-reaching vision of Mary Breckinridge, the dedication of our faculty, staff, students and alumni and the increasing world-wide demand for trained women's and family health care professionals. By combining the Frontier Nursing heritage with the academic prestige of the University title, we will be able to more appropriately describe our unique institution.
We invite you to celebrate with us as we move forward as Frontier Nursing University, and we welcome your feedback. You can find answers to Frequently Asked Questions here on this web page, and if you have additional questions or concerns please utilize one of our discussion forums listed below. We sincerely appreciate your past and continued support of our efforts!
Susan E. Stone
Please click HERE to read the official media release.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
FSMFN faculty and staff put together a few frequently asked questions that we think may help you during this transition.
As of July 1, 2011, the Frontier School of Midwifery and Family Nursing will become the Frontier Nursing University. Becoming Frontier Nursing University will allow FNU to continue to build a state of the art educational institution on the foundation of over 70 years of educational excellence. The new name reflects both the historic roots of the institution and its future-focused vision in the higher education arena. The commitment to the longstanding mission of educating nurses to become competent, entrepreneurial, ethical and compassionate nurse-midwives and nurse practitioners continues unchanged.
• When does the name change become official?
The official change to Frontier Nursing University will take place on July 1, 2011. On that day the school will officially change its charter and begin operating as Frontier Nursing University. The new name and logo will appear in online and print documents as they are updated over the coming months.
• Why did Frontier change its name?
As the Board of Directors and the leadership of the School developed strategic plans for the future, the need for a name that more accurately communicates the institution's standing as a premier nursing education organization - while reflecting Frontier's history and tradition - became evident. Ideally, this would be a name that is distinct, brief, and conveys the institution's academic leadership and integrity. The Frontier Nursing University name maintains the unique legacy of the Frontier Nursing Service and Mary Breckinridge at the forefront while focusing on what is best for the future of the institution and its constituents.
• Why was Frontier Nursing University chosen as the new name?
Higher education institutions that offer master's level programs are often structured with separate schools and/or colleges. Currently, the word "School" in the Frontier name often raises questions about our institution's status as a graduate school offering masters and doctorate degrees. Correctly positioning ourselves as what we have become – an accredited University - will prevent misinterpretation by prospective students, faculty and donors, and will better reflect the nature of our institution. With this transition, we are correctly and positively positioning ourselves within the higher education industry. By retaining the "Frontier Nursing" roots in our name, we will preserve the history and tradition of our institution while concurrently moving to the next level in the academic world.
• What about Frontier's mission and values?
Only the name of the institution has changed; nothing will change with the school's mission. Frontier Nursing University will continue to fulfill its historic commitment to the same mission - to educate nurses to become competent, entrepreneurial, ethical and compassionate nurse-midwives and nurse practitioners who are leaders in the primary care of women and families with an emphasis on underserved and rural populations.
Frontier will continue to embrace the same values identified below through the phrase “circle up.” *
- C – Compassion
- I – Innovation
- R – Reflection
- C – Community
- L – Legacy
- E – Excellence
- U – Uniqueness
- P – Primary Care
* When students visit campus for Frontier Bound orientation or Clinical Bound training each day ends with a "Circle Up." Students, faculty, and staff link arms with one another and form a circle. Everyone pauses to reflect on the day, share encouraging thoughts and take time to remember the spirit of our School. As most students and alumni have experienced at least one "circle up" session at Frontier and understand its deep-rooted history, this phrase is a meaningful and memorable way to express our values as an institution.
• Does the change from school to university mean a larger, more impersonal school?
Absolutely not. We remain committed to maintaining the atmosphere and community that are key components of the Frontier culture. For many graduates, students, faculty and staff, a close-knit community is one of the biggest assets of the school and Frontier's identity and distinctiveness, and it will be both preserved and nurtured going forward.
The University will continue to grow at the same projected enrollment rate, and Frontier's well-respected faculty will continue to value the importance of educating students by building relationships with students throughout the learning process.
• Did Frontier update its logo?
Although the actual institution name will change in the logo, the iconic logo itself will remain as the same circle enclosing an image of the nurse-midwife on horseback legacy. The logo visually represents the history, tradition and values that the institution carries forward from the early days of the Frontier Nursing Service.
• What else will change now that we are Frontier Nursing University?
Frankly, very little will change. Frontier will remain as a private, non-profit, non-residential graduate school of nursing offering community-based distance education programs leading to the Doctor of Nursing Practice degree, the Master of Science in Nursing degree and/or post-master's certificates in advanced practice nursing specialties. The mission will remain the same as it has been since 1939, to educate nurse-midwives and nurse practitioners who are leaders in the primary care of women and families with an emphasis on underserved and rural populations. Frontier will continually strive to improve our status as a center of excellence for midwifery and nurse practitioner education.
While the logo and materials will be redesigned to reflect the new name, the institution's strong traditions and mission continue.
• Will current students be graduates of FSMFN or FNU and can alumni request new FNU diplomas?
All students graduating on July 1, 2011 or after will receive diplomas with the Frontier Nursing University name. All students finishing prior to July 1, 2011 will receive a diploma with the Frontier School of Midwifery and Family Nursing name. Alumni may request a diploma with the new name. New alumni (graduating after June 30) cannot request a diploma with the old name. We suggest all graduates alter their resume to read "Frontier Nursing University, formerly Frontier School of Midwifery and Family Nursing."
• Will student, faculty, staff, or alumni e-mail addresses change?
Yes. Although previous email addresses will still function, new email addresses will be set up with a new address. Faculty, staff, students and alumni will be notified of this change at the appropriate time.
"Our aim has always been to see ourselves surpassed"
Founder, Frontier Nursing Service