LEHMAN, Pa. — Eight nurses earned their nursing management certificates after completing Penn State Wilkes-Barre Continuing Education’s program in May.
Amanda O’Brien, Yuri Pelepko-Filak, Nikolai Pelepko-Filak, Randi Bunchalk, Lynda Lesak, Mahmoud Moustafa, Sheila Moreira and Helen Cummings, all nurses at the VA Medical Center in Wilkes-Barre, were the second cohort of nurses to complete the program. All Continuing Education certificate completers were invited to the Penn State Wilkes-Barre graduate celebration.
“It has been a pleasure to work with such a dedicated group of RNs who are interested in developing their skills as leaders in today’s challenging healthcare environment,” said instructor Dr. Mary Tencza, DNP, RN. “These individuals showed commitment and adaptation as we transitioned from an in-person classroom to a virtual environment. I am so proud of their growth and honored that they took time out of their busy lives to complete the certification. I wish each one much success as they continue on their career paths.”
Nursing managers are an integral part of a well-run medical staff. While mainly responsible for overseeing, recruiting and retaining nurses, they also hold the responsibility of collaborating with doctors and other healthcare providers on patient care. Nursing managers also act as a liaison between the healthcare facility, physician groups and the nursing staff.
“This certificate provides RNs in our community the opportunity to set themselves apart from other registered nurses on the career ladder by gaining the tools needed for nursing manager positions,” said Director of Continuing Education Jane Ashton. “We are so proud of our graduating class. We applaud the VA Medical Center for recognizing the value of this education for their workforce.”
Penn State Wilkes-Barre’s Department of Continuing Education offers the certificate in partnership with the Penn State College of Nursing, bringing all the resources of a world-class, Big Ten, research-oriented university to northeastern Pennsylvania.
Admission is open to registered nurses in all stages of career development, including those with no formal background in management. The program builds leadership skills while teaching nurses how to manage others consistently and effectively.
“I graduated two-and-a-half years ago and still find the information learned in this course to be relevant and extremely valuable in my current leadership position,” said Susan Lewis, MSN, APRN, AGCNS-AG, chief of staff development at the VA Medical Center.
A new Nursing Management Certificate cohort will begin in the fall and is open to registered nurses from all health care systems. The new cohort is a collaboration among Penn State Wilkes-Barre, Penn State Scranton and Penn State Hazleton.
The program will be delivered in an instructor-led video classroom via Zoom or on-site at the VA Medical Center. It consists of 10 three-hour classes each semester. Four courses are required to earn the certificate, with one or two courses per semester offered based on demand. Classes are held weekday evenings to meet the needs of working professionals.