TTU Nursing dean accepts position at Kentucky school

After seven years as dean of the School of Nursing at Tennessee Tech University, Marilyn Musacchio has resigned to accept a position as chairperson of the School of Nursing at Spalding University in her hometown of Louisville, Ky. She will leave TTU mid August.

Musacchio's decision to move on comes at a turning point in the history of the 25-year-old nursing program at Tennessee Tech.

"I have enjoyed working with Dean Musacchio, and I appreciate the contributions she has made to Tennessee Tech," said TTU President Robert Bell. "Dean Musacchio's involvement in our fund-raising campaign for a new building to house our School of Nursing was instrumental to its success. This is a milestone for the program and for the university. Her new position sounds as if it offers tremendous new opportunities, and I wish her every success."

Musacchio joined the TTU faculty at a time when the nursing program was suffering growing pains; within a month of her arrival on campus, she began overseeing the move from the school's original home, which had been condemned for its poor structural condition, into temporary offices and classrooms. Over the next few years, as planning for a new building took place, she shepherded her faculty and students through several temporary locations.

She was deeply involved in the architectural planning and fund-raising process, which ended successfully this summer with $2.5 million in federal funds, $4 million in private funds, and legislative approval of $15.4 million to complete the funding phase of the new building. Construction is expected to start in the summer of 2006.

Over the past two years, Musacchio played a leadership role with the inception of an online master's degree program in nursing. Offered through the Regents Online Degree Program, which is administered by the Tennessee Board of Regents, the M.S.N. will include a focus on rural health issues, and Musacchio has been developing a specialized curriculum devoted to that topic.

A highly decorated veteran of the U.S. Army Reserve, Musacchio joined the TTU faculty after six years with the University of Alabama at Birmingham School of Nursing and 16 years at the University of Kentucky College of Nursing. Her 26 years of service to the Reserve culminated with an appointment as Brigadier General; she was the only second reserve female and second reserve nurse ever to hold that position. She received the highest award for recognition of professional accomplishment in the Army Medical Department bestowed by the Surgeon General of the U.S. Army.

A native of Louisville, Musacchio earned her bachelor's degree from Spalding, a master's and nurse-midwife certificate from the University of Kentucky at Lexington, and a doctorate in nursing research from Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland, Ohio.

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