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9 November 2005
Dr. Sarah Latham Named Dean of JSU's College of Nursing and Health Sciences

Dr. Sarah Latham

Dr. Sarah Latham of Cedar Bluff, who served as acting dean of the Jacksonville State University nursing program, has been named dean of the College of Nursing and Health Sciences. Her appointment became effective November 1.

JSU President William A. Meehan said, "Dr. Latham has done an outstanding job as acting dean while filling in for the former dean, Dr. Martha Lavender, who was on administrative leave to work with EAI Corporation at McClellan's Center for Domestic Preparedness, an agency of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security. I am very pleased to announce that Dr. Latham has decided to continue to serve Jacksonville State University in this key leadership role."

Dr. Rebecca O. Turner, JSU's vice president for academic and student affairs, said, "Dr. Latham is highly qualified and has guided the nursing program through a successful reaccreditation process. As a result, the College of Nursing and Health Sciences recently gained reaccreditation through December 2015 from the Commission of Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE), which rules on accreditation for more than 78% of all nursing schools across the United States."

Dr. Latham said, "It is an honor to serve JSU in the role of dean of the College of Nursing and Health Sciences. We have an extraordinary cadre of faculty, staff, and students. It is a joy to be part of a group totally focused on excellence in nursing."

Dr. Latham studied nursing at the University of Alabama-Birmingham School of Nursing (UABSON), where she obtained her bachelor's and master's degrees; she taught undergraduate nursing at UAB from 1975-1978. Dr. Latham began her career at JSU in 1982 as an assistant professor of nursing and was awarded a one year leave of absence from 1983-1984 to pursue her doctorate in nursing at UAB.  This leave of absence was funded by a federal grant because of the paucity of doctorally prepared nurses.  Upon completion of her Doctor of Science in Nursing in 1985, her dissertation received the UABSON award  for “Most Significant Research by a Doctoral Student.”

Dr. Latham has taught across the curriculum in nursing from foundations to critical care. She has been involved in the traditional nursing program, the RN to BSN program (STEP) and the MSN program. Although her specialty is critical care, she has participated in the graduate epidemiology course and research. Dr. Latham has been invited frequently to make presentations related to physiology (such as cardiac output and congestive heart failure), patient assessment and interpretation of lab values, and complex nursing care of critically ill patients.

From 1987 to 2003 Dr. Latham served as coordinator of student services and was involved in recruitment for both JSU and the nursing program.  She has worked on numerous committees at the college and university levels including institutional effectiveness, program review, SACS self study subcommittee, JSU mission and goals, and is a faculty director of the JSU Foundation. She is a member of the American Nurses Association, the Alabama State Nurses Association, and Sigma Theta Tau International Nursing Honor Society.

Dr. Latham was a co-recipient of the Outstanding Teacher Award given by JSU in 1999-2000 and was the recipient of the Lamplighter Award 1995 given by the Alabama League for Nursing. She was the Alternate Outstanding Educator in 1999 of the Women Committee of Excellence program presented by the Cottaquilla Council of Girl Scouts.

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