The nurse faculty shortage has impacted current and future nursing workforce needs and health outcomes. What has not been expansively reported is the perspective of nursing program administrators as they grapple with the nurse faculty shortage and its effect in their schools.
The purpose was to explore nursing program administrators' perspectives of the nurse faculty shortage.
Administrators from 8 community colleges and 8 universities representing undergraduate and graduate nursing programs in the mid-Atlantic region participated in semistructured interviews pre-coronavirus disease (SARS COVID-19). Researchers used a 7-stage Heideggerian hermeneutic analysis.
Twenty-four interviews elicited 4 themes: onboarding and integration; “elephant in the room”; making do: getting by; and changing expectations.
Administrators faced increasing faculty workloads, academic/practice pay disparities, and staffing challenges—a stark contrast to their goal of teaching excellence, quality student outcomes, and faculty satisfaction. An unexpected finding was a deterioration in workplace climate and its untoward effects on meeting workforce needs.