Dr. Elizabeth Saewyc appointed UBC School of Nursing director for second term

Dr. Elizabeth Saewyc

Dr. Elizabeth Saewyc, Professor and Distinguished University Scholar, has been reappointed as director of the UBC School of Nursing.

Under Dr. Saewyc’s leadership, the school has grown significantly in size and prominence over the past five years. Tied for first place in Maclean’s magazine’s 2022 ranking of Canadian nursing programs and named by QS World University Rankings as one of the top 25 nursing schools worldwide, UBC Nursing has doubled its nurse practitioner program and seen a marked rise in application numbers. With the BC government’s recent commitment to add new nursing seats at UBC and other post-secondary nursing programs, the school is set to continue its expansion and enable the province to better meet British Columbians’ health care needs. 

UBC Nursing has provided critical services to the community throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, leading efforts in rapid-testing, self-testing and the rollout of vaccines. The school has also taken action to boost equity, diversity and inclusion in education and health care, particularly with respect to Indigenous peoples. This has included the launch of a mandatory undergraduate course titled “Promoting the Health of Indigenous People,” the formation of an Anti-Racism Committee and an Indigenous Cultural Safety Committee and the appointment of Tania Dick as the school’s inaugural Indigenous Nursing Lead. 

Dr. Saewyc’s first term was marked by a number of other notable events and achievements. In 2019, UBC Nursing celebrated its centenary with a year-long series of events, lectures and symposia. The school secured three new Canada Research Chairs and established a Professorship in Cardiovascular Nursing Research in partnership with St. Paul’s Foundation and the Heart and Stroke Foundation. As well, construction began on the Gateway Health Building: the recipient of a 2021 Canadian Architect Award of Excellence, it will be the permanent new home for UBC Nursing’s world-class teaching, learning and health research.

The reappointment of Dr. Saewyc, who also leads the Stigma and Resilience Among Vulnerable Youth Centre, was announced last night at the virtual Nursing Gala 2022, which aims to "celebrate the activities and achievements of the School of Nursing, its staff, faculty, students, alumni and friends." Her new five-year term will begin on July 1, 2022.

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