A world-class city filled with art and culture and an incredible campus that offers cutting edge resources–that’s what students receive at Penn Nursing. And that’s just the start. Penn Nursing and the wider university offer something for everyone, as well as a lifelong community.

Penn Nursing is globally known for educating dynamic nurses—because our School values evidence-based science and health equity. That’s where our expertise lies, whether in research, practice, community health, or beyond. Everything we do upholds a through-line of innovation, encouraging our exceptional students, alumni, and faculty share their knowledge and skills to reshape health care.

Penn Nursing students are bold and unafraid, ready to embrace any challenge that comes their way. Whether you are exploring a career in nursing or interested in advancing your nursing career, a Penn Nursing education will help you meet your goals and become an innovative leader, prepared to change the face of health and wellness.

Penn Nursing is the #1-ranked nursing school in the world. Its highly-ranked programs help develop highly-skilled leaders in health care who are prepared to work alongside communities to tackle issues of health equity and social justice to improve health and wellness for everyone.

Penn Nursing’s rigorous academic curricula are taught by world renowned experts, ensuring that students at every level receive an exceptional Ivy League education. From augmented reality classrooms and clinical simulations to coursework that includes experiential global travel to clinical placements in top notch facilities, a Penn Nursing education prepares our graduates to lead.

Serving Communities in Need

The first graduates of the Leonard A. Lauder Community Care Nurse Practitioner Program are already making a real-world difference in underserved communities.

February 13, 2024
A black nurse practitioner examines child's ear.
Janelle Scruggs, Penn Nursing student and Leonard A. Lauder Community Care Nurse Practitioner Fellow, examines a patient’s ear.

Before coming to Penn, Rebecca Hosey, Nu’21, GNu’23, was in graduate school studying public health when she had the opportunity to work directly with a stigmatized community in Philadelphia.

At Prevention Point—a nonprofit public health organization in Kensington—she helped people with substance-use disorders and other ailments secure shelter beds, health insurance, and even a hot meal at the nonprofit’s drop-in center. “That work was life-changing, and it motivated me to enter the nursing profession,” Hosey says.


A group photo of the first graduates of the Leonard A. Lauder Community Care Nurse Practitioner Program. A group photo of the first graduates of the Leonard A. Lauder Community Care Nurse Practitioner Program. Hosey decided to enroll at Penn Nursing and was eventually named one of the inaugural fellows in the Leonard A. Lauder Community Care Nurse Practitioner Program. The program is building a nurse practitioner workforce committed to working with underserved populations, thanks to a $125 million gift from Leonard A. Lauder, W’54, Emeritus Trustee and Chairman Emeritus of The Estée Lauder Companies. The inaugural cohort of fellows received full scholarships, along with curated learning and mentorship opportunities, and are now in the field providing high-quality primary care to communities in need.

“Advancing health equity is at the very foundation of what we do at Penn Nursing,” says Antonia Villarruel, Margaret Bond Simon Dean at Penn Nursing. “Working to develop a pipeline of nurse practitioners who are committed and prepared to serve in marginalized rural and urban communities through the Leonard A. Lauder Community Care Nurse Practitioner Program is a lasting investment in both nursing and society.”

Nurse practitioners have the knowledge and skills to manage critical aspects of care, from diagnosing patients to ordering and interpreting tests and prescribing medication. This makes them uniquely positioned to serve communities that are experiencing shortages of doctors and other health care professionals across the United States. “The Leonard A. Lauder Community Care Nurse Practitioner Program has been transformational,” says its Executive Director, Kimberly Strauch. “Over the past two years, we’ve admitted 28 Fellows from all six of our primary care nurse practitioner programs. We will continue to build on our success—and substantially increase the number of primary care clinicians ready to serve communities in need.”

Julie Nguyen, GNu’23, completed the Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner program at Penn Nursing in May 2023 and has since returned home to Colorado. “I knew that I wanted to work with under-resourced communities after graduating,” says Nguyen. “The program helped me secure clinical placements that aligned with my goal and those experiences reaffirmed my passion to lower the stigma around mental health.”

For Hosey, the experience of being a Leonard A. Lauder Fellow gave her the benefit of mentorship, community, and learning opportunities at Penn Nursing. She found the panels that focused on nurse-practitioner specific health care issues such as immigration and reintegration to be especially inspiring. “There were so many opportunities to dive deeply into issues,” she says. “The experience—including my instructors, cohort, coursework, and clinicals—was such a gift.”

Julie Nguyen, GNu'23, and Rebecca Hosey, Nu'21, GNu'23. Julie Nguyen, GNu’23, and Rebecca Hosey, Nu’21, GNu’23.

Both Nguyen and Hosey are already employed in their first roles as nurse practitioners—each serving a population with an acute need for the care they deserve. Hosey is a newly certified Family Nurse Practitioner with a job lined up at Delaware Valley Community Health. Once she receives her Pennsylvania licensure, Hosey will divide her time between family practice and substance-use and wound care patients. Nguyen returned home to Colorado and is working at The Courage Clinic, which provides mental health care and psychiatric medication management to vulnerable groups including immigrants and refugees, people who identify as LGBTQIA+, and those with neurodiverse learning styles.

“Philly has a place in my heart, but my life is in Colorado,” she says. “I’m serving the community that fostered my growth to become a psychiatric nurse practitioner. That same community raised me, and I’m hoping to continue with them on their life journey as well.”

For more information about the Leonard A. Lauder Community Care Nurse Practitioner Program, email Kim Strauch or call (215) 898-9279.

This story was written by Sarah Punderson and originally published in Knowledge for Good.

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