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NLN Publishes Global Service-Learning in Nursing: A Blueprint for Sharing Best Practices from Around the Corner to Around the World

NLN Publishes Global Service-Learning in Nursing: A Blueprint for Sharing Best Practices from Around the Corner to Around the World

Contributing Authors Represent a Diversity of Race, Ethnicity, and Scholarship


New York, NY — November 7, 2011 — Nurses throughout the world speak a common language of healing. But nowhere before has there been a single source of information for nurse educators seeking to develop programs to teach best practices of care-giving across cultural and geographic boundaries. With the National League for Nursings publication of Global Service-Learning in Nursing, that gap has now been filled. The volume, edited by Tamara H. McKinnon, PhD, RN and Joyce J. Fitzpatrick, PhD, MBA, RN, FAAN, FNAP, is a tangible reflection of the NLNs commitment to diversity.

With the international realities of migration dissolving borders between countries, advanced communications technology, global health care needs, and a worldwide nursing shortage, it is a critical priority to prepare an ethnically and racially diverse workforce of faculty, researchers, and scholars to mentor future nurses and nurse educators. Global Service-Learning in Nursing grew out of Dr. McKinnons doctoral research at Case Western Reserve University and her partnership with the NLN.

Conceived as a toolkit for thought leaders in nursing education interested in developing new global service-learning (GSL) programs or implementing changes to sustain or strengthen existing initiatives, Dr. McKinnon invited contributions from diverse authors with experience working with international students in the US for "study abroad" who have learned to accommodate a variety of learning needs based on the diversity of cultures represented in their classrooms.

"No one country owns the knowledge or service that nursing can provide. This book provides a map for approaching the best of global work in nursing. It stretches our own culturally determined value system while binding us to others — other nurses, other people — in profound ways," said NLN CEO Beverly Malone, PhD, RN, FAAN. "The authors demystify the global endeavor by clearing the brush from the pathway, helping us see clearly the reality of global commitment through partnerships."

The book begins with Dr. McKinnons chapter outlining seven basic practice principles all GSL programs should incorporate, based on her belief that nurse educators could benefit from a standardized approach to the development of global service-learning programs: compassion, curiosity, courage, collaboration, creativity, capacity building, and competence.

A later chapter offers four differing perspectives from contributors who describe their personal experiences: a faculty member at an institution that has been running GSL programs for 35 years; a nurse educator who helped develop a new global service-learning course; and a third, who as a nursing student, shadowed an RN in Ireland. The fourth shares her disappointment in failing to launch a GSL program at her school.

In her Preface to Global Service-Learning, co-editor Joyce J. Fitzpatrick, who is also editor of the NLNs research journal, Nursing Education Perspectives, calls global service-learning "a state of mind, a willingness to learn from others and to serve others, no matter where they live." Summing up the books theme, Dr. Fitzpatrick says, "The global service-learning model offers an excellent structure within which to enhance our participation in the global health care community. This book charts the course of our accomplishments thus far, and challenges us to stretch even more."

To order books, please email or visit

Editors and reporters: For interview opportunities, please contact NLN chief communications officer, Karen R. Klestzick at 212-812-0376 or

Dedicated to excellence in nursing, the National League for Nursing is the premier organization for nurse faculty and leaders in nursing education. The NLN offers professional development, networking opportunities, testing services, nursing research grants, and public policy initiatives to its 35,000 individual and 1,200 institutional members. NLN members represent nursing education programs across the spectrum of higher education and health care organizations and agencies.