Published on April 14, 2020 by Sara Roman  

The National Academies of Practice (NAP) recently inducted Nena F. Sanders, vice provost of Samford’s College of Health Sciences and dean of Ida Moffett School of Nursing, as a Distinguished Fellow of the National Academies of Practice (NAP) in Nursing.

 Annually, NAP Distinguished Fellows are nominated and elected by their peers. Fellowship in NAP is an honor extended to those who have made significant contributions to their profession and are dedicated to furthering interprofessional practice, scholarship and policy in support of interprofessional care. 

Throughout her nearly 40-year career as a nurse, entrepreneur, educator, administrator and health care consultant, Sanders has improved the delivery of health care from multiple fronts, earning national and international recognition for her efforts.

Aligning her passion for transforming health care systems with the education and training of nurses, Sanders joined the Samford faculty in 1999. In 2001, she was named dean of Ida Moffett School of Nursing and in 2013 she was appointed the founding vice provost of Samford’s College of Health Sciences where she has created a culture of collaboration and an incubator for interprofessional education.

Sanders has also been involved in developing, implementing and evaluating graduate nursing education programs for nearly three decades and she participates in numerous professional and community service endeavors. 

“I am honored to have been selected as a member of this distinctive organization,” said Sanders. “Throughout my career, I have been committed to interprofessional collaboration because I have seen first-hand that we can provide better patient outcomes when we work as a team.”

Founded in 1981, NAP is an interprofessional, nonprofit organization whose members serve as distinguished advisors to health care policy makers in Congress and elsewhere. Comprised of 13 different health professions, it is the only interprofessional group of health care practitioners and scholars dedicated to supporting affordable, accessible, coordinated quality health care for all. 

Past Samford faculty members and graduates who have received this award include, Ellen Buckner, professor in Samford University’s Ida Moffett School of Nursing, and Michael Hogue, a 1996 alumnus of Samford University’s McWhorter School of Pharmacy, who were inducted as NAP Distinguished Fellows in 2019 and 2012 respectively.
Samford is a leading Christian university offering undergraduate programs grounded in the liberal arts with an array of nationally recognized graduate and professional schools. Founded in 1841, Samford is the 87th-oldest institution of higher learning in the United States. Samford enrolls 5,791 students from 49 states, Puerto Rico and 16 countries in its 10 academic schools: arts, arts and sciences, business, divinity, education, health professions, law, nursing, pharmacy and public health. Samford fields 17 athletic teams that compete in the tradition-rich Southern Conference and ranks 6th nationally for its Graduation Success Rate among all NCAA Division I schools.