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Bernaix named SIUE School of Nursing interim dean

EDWARDSVILLE – The Southern Illinois University board of trustees has confirmed Dr. Laura Bernaix as interim dean of the SIUE School of Nursing effective July 1.

bernaix CaptureBernaix, left, a professor and associate dean of academic programs in the School of Nursing, replaces Dr. Anne G. Perry who will retire at the end of June after 10 years at SIUE.

Bernaix brings 25 years of academic experience as an SIUE faculty member. She served as chair of the Department of Primary Care and Health Systems Nursing since 2009. In 2013, her role expanded to also serve as associate dean.

Among her many service activities within the School, Bernaix has served on the Research and Grant Review Committee, the Graduate Curriculum Committee, the P&T (promotion and tenure) Committee, the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education Task Force, and several key search committees. She has chaired the Dean’s Advisory Committee, the Doctor of Nursing Practice Project Committee and the School of Nursing Faculty Council.

At the university level, Bernaix served on the Faculty Senate from 2002-05 and on the Graduate Course Review Committee from 2003-10. She has been a counselor in the Peer Consulting/Mentoring Program since 2010, participated on the REALITY Experiential Learning Work Group and is a member of the National Institutes of Health (NIH) BRAD (Biomedical/Biobehavioral Research Administration Development) Steering Committee.

“Dr. Bernaix’s experience and leadership at SIUE has been characterized by a positive approach to problem solving, and a clear commitment to academic and scholarly excellence,” said Dr. Ann Boyle, interim provost and vice chancellor of Academic Affairs. “Her leadership capabilities and experience will be important for the School of Nursing during this interim period as the responsibilities are numerous. I am pleased that Dr. Bernaix is willing to serve the School in this interim role.”

Bernaix is acknowledged professionally for her extensive service to the national Association of Women’s Health, Obstetrics and Neonatal Nursing Research Advisory Panel. She was a co-principal investigator for the NIH National Children’s Study from 2009-13 and has presented her work at international and national conferences.

Bernaix has published in various professional journals, and is a reviewer for two maternal-newborn nursing journals and one textbook publisher. She is a Fellow in the American Association of Colleges of Nursing Leadership for Academic Nursing Program and has served on the editorial board of the Journal of Obstetric, Gynecologic and Neonatal Nursing since 2009. In February 2014, she served as a reviewer for the 2014 NIH NRCS Study Section.

“It is an honor and a privilege to serve in this role for the School of Nursing,” said Bernaix. “I look forward to my ongoing partnership with our exceptional faculty, staff and students, as well as our supportive community colleagues and agencies.”

Bernaix will immediately begin transition planning. A search for a permanent dean will begin in Fall 2015.

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