USF Health names Dr. Victoria Rich as dean of USF College of Nursing

Dr. Rich, a transformative nurse leader and innovator, brings a wealth of knowledge to USF in interprofessional education and practice  

TAMPA, Fla. (May 18, 2017) – The University of South Florida appointed Victoria Rich, PhD, as the new dean of the USF College of Nursing. Dr. Rich has served as associate professor and interim associate dean of academic programs at USF’s nursing college. She begins her role new role as dean on June 15.

Dr. Rich, who joined the USF College of Nursing in 2015, brings more than 35 years of leadership experience in education, clinical practice, patient safety and cultural diversity.

“We are pleased to name Dr. Rich to lead USF College of Nursing as we continue to advance health care through cutting-edge research, education and practice,” said USF System President Judy Genshaft. “Dr. Rich is an experienced nursing leader with decades of experience in education and practice. Through her leadership, the USF College of Nursing will continue to achieve significant milestones, including earning top national rankings, elevating strong nursing research, and attracting the best and brightest faculty and students.”

Victoria Rich, PhD

“Dr. Rich is an outstanding leader who understands the value of our tripartite mission of education, research and clinical care,” said Charles J. Lockwood, MD, senior vice president for USF Health and dean of the Morsani College of Medicine. “She brings to this key position extraordinary leadership from her extensive background coupled with energy, enthusiasm and passion. Dr. Rich will be a powerful advocate for nursing at USF, in Florida and nationally. Her keen insight for interprofessional education and team-based practice will help further transform the future of health and patient care. I am delighted to have such an important addition to USF Health’s leadership team to achieve excellence in all we do.”

“As one of Dr. Rich’s references said, ‘She is the nursing dean of the future’ and I couldn’t agree more,” said Donna Petersen, ScD, dean of the USF College of Public Health, and senior associate vice president of USF Health, who has served as interim dean of the USF College of Nursing since June 2015. “The USF College of Nursing is already outstanding, but it’s also poised to leap into the future with its own brand of clinically-relevant research, professional practice, and new levels of engagement with academic, clinical and community partners. Dr. Rich brings an entrepreneurial spirit, a stellar reputation as a leader and a keen business sense that will serve the college well.”

Dr. Rich will lead more than 230 faculty and staff, 234 volunteer faculty and more than 2,000 nursing students in baccalaureate, master’s, PhD and Doctor of Nursing Practice programs. USF College of Nursing tops Florida’s state universities in National Institutes of Health funding for research. The college is also nationally recognized as one of the top veteran-friendly nursing colleges in the nation. Dr. Rich will be the fifth dean of the USF College of Nursing since the college was first founded in 1973.

“I’m proud to be named to lead a nationally-recognized college known for its top-quality faculty, dedicated staff and highly prepared students,” Dr. Rich said. “I’m excited to work together with leaders from all USF Health colleges of Medicine, Pharmacy, Public Health, and the School of Physical Therapy and Rehabilitation Sciences to embrace the challenges and opportunities of academia and health care. I deeply believe that education and practice need to be a hand-in-glove partnership, so I’m excited to help move that forward through the interprofessional lens of USF Health.”

Before joining USF, Dr. Rich was the chief nurse executive and associate hospital administrator for the University of Pennsylvania Medical Center and the associate professor of nursing administration at the University of Pennsylvania Health System’s School of Nursing. During her tenure at PENN Health System, she helped establish a longstanding partnership between academia and practice.

During that time, she also helped develop an interprofessional model of team-based care incorporating unit physicians, advanced practice providers, nurse clinician leaders, pharmacists and quality specialists to improve patient care. That model has been replicated both nationally and internationally.

Dr. Rich earned her bachelor’s degree in nursing from Indiana University of Pennsylvania with highest honors. She received her master’s degree and PhD in nursing administration from the University of Pittsburgh. Dr. Rich is nationally known for her work on patient safety and transformational nursing leadership. As a result, she’s received the Prism Diversity Award from the American Organization of Nurse Executives, and the Patient Safety Award from Voluntary Hospital Association (now Vizient).

Dr. Rich is a fellow in the American Academy of Nursing and an ambassador for the National Institute of Nursing Research. She is also a member of the Patient Safety Committee for National Quality Forum and consultant for CNO Solutions and Center for Applied Research.

-Photo by Ryan Noone, USF Communications and Marketing