school of nursing

The operating room, hospital bedside, primary care office, school, or community site: At some point in our lives, we all benefit from the skills of a nurse. In North Carolina, the UNCG School of Nursing is a top educator of qualified and skilled nurses. Poised to expand in every direction, we are excited by the possibilities. Our new dean, Dr. Debra J. Barksdale, and our new Nursing and Instructional Building are giving us energy and momentum. We’re taking giant steps toward transforming the future of nursing by focusing on inclusive communities, passionate people, innovative practices, and extraordinary outcomes.

And there isn’t a moment to waste. One of the greatest challenges facing the state of North Carolina – and the nation – is the lack of a highly qualified nursing workforce. In fact, by 2025, there will be an estimated shortage of 13,000 nurses in the state.

Your gift to Light the Way will empower the School of Nursing to meet this crucial challenge. Your investment will give us the resources we need to attract and support students of all backgrounds, equip our new building with the latest educational technology, and provide the flexibility needed to respond to pressing demands and emerging opportunities. Together, we will light the way for tomorrow’s nursing workforce.

“Nursing education is evolving to meet the complex health needs of our society. The School of Nursing is dedicated to meeting these needs, thus continuing the standard of excellence that has been set by our alumni. By coming together through the campaign, we will create a legacy to be proud of.”

— Dr. Debra J. Barksdale, Dean of the School of Nursing

caring for the future of north caROLINA


A well-educated nursing workforce is paramount to meeting the needs of our state. Sustainable scholarship funding will ensure UNCG can recruit the brightest students and that financial need never prevents a prospective student from becoming a nurse. To grow our workforce, we want to double the number of endowed scholarships so students from all backgrounds who want to become nurses can graduate with minimal debt. Increasing our scholarships for recruitment and retention will help bolster the regional nursing workforce as the majority of UNCG alumni choose to stay in North Carolina.


Opened in January 2021, the Nursing and Instructional Building supports nursing and STEM programs in new, state-of-the-art spaces. This 180,000-square-foot facility allows us to break down barriers between nursing, anatomy, biology, chemistry, and kinesiology, making students across these departments more collaborative — mirroring how they will operate in their professions.

The building was made possible thanks to the Connect NC Bond, passed by North Carolina voters. While this funding covered bricks and mortar, it did not fully upfit the facility with lab equipment, simulation technology, or other supplies to meet the changing demands and complexities of today’s health care.

Our initial goal is to secure $500,000 to furnish these critical elements that allow students to hone their practice and research skills, giving them an edge in their courses and their professional lives.


The campaign presents an ideal opportunity to create a new, flexible source of support: the School of Nursing Enrichment Fund. Raising $100,000 in unrestricted dollars for this new fund will give the dean the ability to respond to a rapidly changing environment. Plans for the fund include investing in faculty professional development, particularly opportunities that maintain and expand our status as a National League for Nursing Center of Excellence in Nursing Education. Also, the fund will allow us to help students continue their education when they meet financial emergencies that can’t be addressed by traditional financial aid. By allowing UNCG’s nursing program to rise to an array of challenges, this flexible fund will strengthen our school, our students, and our profession.


number of additional nurses North Carolina will need by 2025


number of qualified nursing applicants turned away annually due to capacity limitations


of nursing students are classified by the federal government as having substantial financial need

Your generosity will support UNCG Nursing programs, facilities, and students.