A compounding factor in many nursing schools is the availability of nursing faculty. They, like nurses in healthcare delivery, are aging. Thus, for some schools, even if they could recruit more students, they may not have faculty to teach them. Similar issues contribute to the shortage of faculty: compensation, cost of advanced preparation, and work conditions. Solution: Are there ways in which the aging practicing nurse who can no longer manage the physical demands of the job can be used to educate new nurses? One concern about practicing nurses is that they do not have curriculum development and performance measurement skills. If this is a barrier for recruiting needed faculty, solutions should possible. New models of education are needed as acutely as new models of patient care delivery. Practice and education have a long history of not being aligned. Perhaps the conditions now exist to unite practice and education, to have each earnestly listen to the other, and to enable them to design solutions together.
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