Philosophy of the School of Nursing

The mission of West Virginia Wesleyan College is based on the belief that a commitment to lifelong learning is needed to develop students’ intellectual, ethical, spiritual and leadership potential, and to uphold standards of excellence. Acknowledging our heritage with the United Methodist Church, West Virginia Wesleyan College is a community of learning based on fundamental principles of Christianity and liberal education.

In keeping with the West Virginia Wesleyan College’s mission, the philosophy of the school of nursing endeavors to graduate men and women who think critically and creatively, communicate effectively, act responsibly and demonstrate their local and world citizenship through service. This is reflected in the schools’s program purposes.

The faculty of the department of nursing has developed a professional nursing program based on their beliefs about Health, Nursing, Environment and Humankind. Hence, the department’s philosophy is reflected in the following:

HEALTH

Health is a process through which individuals, families, groups and communities maximize potential for living. Viewed as a dynamic process, health changes with time and varies according to life circumstances and adaptations. Health may be viewed on a wellness-illness continuum. The individual’s decisions, choices and circumstances within the environment create an interdependence that contributes to health. The accessibility and affordability of available healthcare services is recognized for its effect on health. The caring and therapeutic presence of the nurse aids in promoting holistic health of individuals, families, groups and communities.

NURSING

Nursing is an art and science practiced by professionals who value caring, commitment and concern for individuals, families, groups and communities. Influenced by environmental, social, cultural and political forces, nursing strives to deliver appropriate, culturally congruent, and quality healthcare services to people. This is accomplished by working creatively and in unity with clients to promote health and meet needs. Nursing engages those who work within an ethical legal framework, apply standards of care, and demonstrate responsibility and accountability for nursing judgment and action. Additionally, nurses critically think for decision making and use the nursing process as a method for providing client centered intervention strategies. Nurses engage in purposeful oral, written and technologic communication in a variety of settings to assist people in meeting health needs. To promote a positive public image, nurses foster lifelong learning as a professional responsibility, and exhibit a service commitment within communities, particularly when access to healthcare services is limited or nonexistent in rural areas. Using an amalgam of roles, nurses assume a provider of care role incorporating advocate, counselor and teacher roles. Through collaboration with multiple healthcare team members, nurses exhibit leadership and management skills, and participate in and utilize nursing research to enhance professional practice and contribute to society. Thus, nurses have an ability to focus on human, fiscal and material resources, make management decisions, use resources effectively and to appropriately delegate responsibilities, evaluate delegation and management decisions to provide optimal care in today’s rapidly changing healthcare delivery system. Recognizing this complexity of nursing, entry level preparation for the registered nurse is best supported at the baccalaureate level.

ENVIRONMENT

Environment is an open exchange of energy between individuals, families, groups and communities. Viewed as both internal and external, these dynamic changes affect life, development, and the needs of people. Systems in the environment provide feedback to people who may choose to set goals, adapt and/or process information, thus interacting with the environment. The environmental scope of influence ranges from individual innate factors to global universal factors.

PEOPLE

Each person is a unique holistic creation, with the mind, body and spirit being inseparable components that need to be considered as the individual progresses through the developmental lifespan. Persons fully engaged in the world as individuals, families, groups and communities perceive, think, feel, choose, decide and set goals based on their own values and beliefs to fulfill their needs.

TEACHING/LEARNING

The educational process is viewed as an interrelated process involving the teacher and the learner in a series of interactional relationships. In this process, the teacher facilitates movement of the learner towards intellectual rigor, self-discovery, critical thinking and a commitment to lifelong learning. A climate that promotes human dignity and mutual support with an appreciation of diversity and life-long scholarship is fostered.