Frontier Nursing University (FNU), located in Versailles, Ky., received an International Distance Learning Award, presented by the United States Distance Learning Association (USDLA). The USDLA revealed the International Distance Learning Award winners during a virtual announcement on November 12, 2021.
Each year, USDLA recognizes innovators and leaders within the distance/digital learning industry as part of our International Award program. These highly coveted awards are presented annually to organizations and individuals who compete across several categories of excellence. The USDLA International Distance Learning Awards are created to acknowledge major accomplishments in distance learning and to highlight those distance learning instructors, programs, and professionals who have achieved and demonstrated extraordinary achievements through the use of online, videoconferencing, and satellite/video delivery technologies globally.
“The International Award program has provided prestigious recognition for educational influencers around the globe for many years,” says Dr. Arletha McSwain, President of USDLA. “These award winners are truly leaders in the distance/digital learning industry, and their work in support of pedagogy is unsurpassed.”
This year, FNU was chosen by the selection committee as the runner-up to the University of Cincinnati for the 21st Century Award. According to the USDLA, “this award is given to an agency, institution, or company that has shown outstanding leadership in the field of distance learning. The award recognizes pioneering organizations in the field that have changed distance learning, challenged existing practice, or developed new and effective solutions.”
Founded in 1939 in rural southeastern Kentucky, Frontier incorporated distance learning more than 30 years ago to broaden its reach and allow students from all over the country to attend. Since then, FNU’s enrollment has increased from 200 to more than 2,500. Most FNU students, who are all seeking advanced nurse-midwifery or nurse practitioner degrees, come to campus at least twice during their academic program but are otherwise able to attend the university while continuing to work in the communities in which they live.
“Frontier Nursing was on the leading edge of distance learning even before the invention of the internet,” said FNU President Dr. Susan Stone, CNM, DNSc, FAAN, FACNM. “It has been essential not only to our growth, but to our mission to prepare our students to care for women and families, particularly serving diverse, rural, and underserved populations. To be recognized as a leader in distance learning by the USDLA is a tremendous honor. We are grateful for USDLA’s impactful and essential leadership and advocacy for distance learning.”
Each year, the annual award winners are recognized by the Association at the USDLA National Conference Awards Dinner and presented with a physical award. However, due to the continued pandemic concerns in 2021, USDLA decided to virtually recognize the award winners during National Distance Learning Week (NDLW). All award winners will also be invited to the USDLA 2022 National Conference in Nashville, Tenn., to be recognized in person.
About the United States Distance Learning Association
The United States Distance Learning Association was founded in 1987 and based on the premise of creating a powerful alliance to meet the burgeoning education and training needs of learning communities via new concepts of the fusion of communication technologies with learning in broad multidiscipline applications. The USDLA was the first nonprofit distance learning association in the United States to support distance learning research, development, and praxis across the complete arena of education, training, and communications. The learning communities that the USDLA addresses are: pre-K/12, higher education, continuing education, corporate training, military and government training, homeschooling, and telehealth. USDLA’s mission is to support the development and application of digital and distance learning by focusing on legislation impacting the community and constituencies.
About Frontier Nursing University
The mission of FNU is to provide accessible nurse-midwifery and nurse practitioner education to prepare competent, entrepreneurial, ethical, and compassionate leaders in primary care to serve all individuals with an emphasis on women and families in diverse, rural, and underserved populations. FNU offers graduate Nurse-Midwifery and Nurse-Practitioner distance education programs that can be pursued full- or part-time with the student’s home community serving as the classroom. Degrees and options offered include Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP), Master of Science in Nursing (MSN), or Post-Graduate Certificates. In 2021, Frontier was named a “Great College to Work For” by the Great Colleges to Work For® program. To learn more about FNU and the programs and degrees offered, please visit Frontier.edu.