Dr. Leslie Higgins, professor of nursing and director of Belmont’s Graduate Studies in Nursing, was recently named as the recipient of the Tennessee Nurses Association (TNA) Nursing Excellence – Nursing Education Award. The Education Excellence award recognizes a nursing faculty who reflects outstanding performance in promoting and maintaining excellence in professional practice, mentorship and educational standards, and provides leadership to improve quality of care.
Serving as a nurse educator for 40 years, Dr. Higgins began with a joint appointment at Vanderbilt School of Nursing/Vanderbilt Medical Center and has continued to work with students since then. Her nominator said of her, “Leslie coined the phrase “the Belmont touch” to characterize a graduate program that is rigorous but student-centered. She acknowledges her high expectations for students, and sets a climate wherein students want to perform at their very best. She shows students how to think critically through her own use of this process. In conversation with Leslie, one can always see “the wheels turning” as she thinks through complex phenomena and encourages students to do the same. Her approach to nursing education is grounded in evidence-based practices, while emphasizing the art of nursing that attends to the whole person.”