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Nursing Department to be Named in Honor of Founder

April 11, 2011
By: WSU News

The Worcester State University Board of Trustees voted, Monday April 4, to name the Nursing Department in Honor of Lillian R. Goodman, Ed.D., who founded the Department of Nursing in 1973.

“Lillian Goodman has done so much for this institution since the founding of the department and during her tenure as chair from 1973 to 1991,” said Board of Trustees Chair John Brissette. “I also want to commend everything Dr. Mary K. Alexander did to help make this a reality. They have both given so much to Worcester State University both as nursing faculty and valued friends.”

Goodman and Alexander are both retired from WSU but remain active in the university. Both serve on the Worcester State Foundation Board.

“Dr. Goodman has a unique talent for connecting with and mentoring our students,” said President Janelle Ashley.  “She is both encouraging and persistent. Our nursing program is highly regarded due to her early and abiding support of our students and faculty.”

Drs. Goodman  and Alexander established the Drs. Lillian R. Goodman and Mary K. Alexander Endowed Nursing Scholarship at Worcester State University in 1994. This scholarship awards four scholarships annually, two to students in their junior year and two to students in their senior year.

In 2008, Drs. Goodman and Alexander establish The Drs. Lillian R. Goodman & Mary K. Alexander Faculty Fellowship Fund at Worcester State University which is designed to address the critical need for nursing faculty. This fund will provide financial assistance for faculty in the nursing department who are pursuing a Ph.D. in nursing.

The Nursing program at Worcester State University was the first Bachelor of Science program for registered nurses in New England and was the first to receive accreditation from the National League of Nursing.  The Master of Science in Nursing Program at Worcester State was founded in 2008 and offers two different tracks for community public health nursing and nursing education.

Goodman is a graduate of the Peter Bent Brigham School of Nursing in Boston and she has her Bachelor of Science and Master of Psychiatric Nursing degrees from Boston University and her doctorate in Administration and Supervision from Boston University School of Education.  She  received the Leadership Award from the Massachusetts Nurses Association in 1979 and the Distinguished Service Award from Worcester State University in 1981.

Dr. Goodman was appointed as Dean of the Graduate School of Nursing at the University of Massachusetts, Worcester in 1991. During her tenure, the school began offering a collaborative doctoral program with UMass Amherst’s nursing school; it added the first adult acute/critical care specialist specialty in New England; and created new sub-specialty programs in cardiac, geriatric and cancer prevention and control education. Under Goodman’s leadership, the UMass Graduate School of Nursing also received a full eight-year accreditation from the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission, a remarkable accomplishment for a school barely 10 years old.

On the 25th anniversary of the founding of the university’s nursing program, in 1999, Dr. Goodman was awarded an Honorary Doctorate Degree in Public Health.


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