Rebecca A. Phillips, MSN, RN
Working with the local community to improve health has been of critical importance to Rebecca Snyder Phillips since her days as a community health nursing student at Penn. As more healthcare moves into the community setting, and the social determinants of health play an increasing role in health, Ms. Phillips focuses much of her community work at Penn Nursing on efforts to bring the community and school together to identify local health needs and discuss strategies to promote the health of the community.
Engaging Students in the Community and the Classroom
This work includes providing opportunities for students to work with community members, as well as focusing on community health and the social determinants of health in the classroom. Through Penn Nursing’s Healthy In Philadelphia Initiative, for example, Ms. Phillips also chairs the annual Wellness Day steering committee.
Wellness Day provides students with opportunities to provide health screenings; educate children and adults on health promotion; encourage dancing, movement, and other fitness activities; and more. Penn Nursing co-sponsored the 6th annual community Wellness Day in 2016 with Mercy LIFE – West Philadelphia, a Program of All-inclusive Care for the Elderly that provides comprehensive nursing, medical, health, recreational and social services to help older adults live independently at home.
“We at Penn Nursing believe that success in building healthy communities begins with listening to the needs of the community.”
- MSN, University of Pennsylvania , 1975
- BSN, University of Pennsylvania , 1970
Ms. Phillips teaches in two undergraduate courses: “Social Determinants of Health” (N103) and “Psychiatric Mental Health Nursing” (N235). She is also clinical faculty for the Dance for Health program in two graduate courses: “Nursing of Children Theory I: Child and Family Development” (N720) and “Pediatric Acute Care Nurse Practitioner: Professional Role and Intermediate Clinical Practice” (N735).
Dance for Health is a community program developed by Penn Nursing faculty member Terri H. Lipman, PhD, CRNP, FAAN to increase physical activity among schoolchildren and their families through dance, which is free and fun, and can be done anywhere. Ms. Phillips is also a nurse planner liaison with the University of Pennsylvania Health System Center for Professional Development, which provides continuing nursing education for the School of Nursing and the health system.
Opportunities to Learn and Collaborate at Penn Nursing
As director of Healthy in Philadelphia, which is designed to improve health, address healthcare disparities, and improve quality of life for adults and children in West Philadelphia, Ms. Phillips facilitates “Building a Healthy West Philadelphia Together.” The semiannual meetings provide opportunities for Penn Nursing and the community to explore local health needs and resources, through the sharing of nursing research, teaching, student initiatives in Community Champions, and referrals to agencies and organizations.
Selected Career Highlights
- Member, Steering Committee, Age Friendly West Philadelphia Initiative, Ralston Center
- Member, Health Center Advisory Board, Family Practice and Counseling Network
- Member, PrimeTime Health Promotion Advisory Committee, Philadelphia Corporation for Aging