Virginia Association of Colleges of Nursing

  • 1.  Faculty Contracts and Release Time for Practice

    Posted 01-28-2020 12:08

    Dear colleagues,


    We are revising some of our policies. I am interested in what policies/practices are out there in our state related to faculty who are on 9 or 10 month contracts, who want to practice one day a week.

    ·        Is their salary adjusted due to time away from the College and that they are being compensated from the practice side?

    ·        Does their salary remain the same, and they receive additional compensation from the practice side?


    Thanks so much,



    Barbara C. Sorbello, PhD, RN, NEA-BC

    Professor and Dean of Academic Affairs

    Bon Secours Memorial College of Nursing

    8550 Magellan Parkway

    Richmond, VA 23227

    Office: 804-627-5344

    Mobile: 804-314-7163

    Fax:  804-627-5186

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  • 2.  RE: Faculty Contracts and Release Time for Practice

    Posted 01-29-2020 16:49

    Currently, we encourage all clinical faculty (faculty teaching clinical courses) to stay active (clinically relevant). Several faculty are required to due to licensure or certification standards. As such, faculty are able to take up to one day a week as a "professional development" day. Most use this day to work in a clinic or in acute care. Some weeks it may be used for personal research or even to attend a conference.

    Salary is not adjusted, but the expectation is that the day is used to stay up to date on current clinical practice needs or grow professionally in a way that positively impacts student outcomes and success.

    Shanna Akers EdD
    Liberty University
    Lynchburg VA

  • 3.  RE: Faculty Contracts and Release Time for Practice

    Posted 01-30-2020 06:45
    Barbara, this is really complex but will try to explain without getting into the weeds.  Faculty in the state-funded schools follow a state policy regarding outside professional activities when it comes to outside employment. Under the policy faculty are able to practice in another agency for pay, but it must be done above and beyond their normal workload and should not interfere with their ability to get their primary job done.  In other words, the faculty member can't be paid by the state to work for another agency for pay (double dipping). So if a faculty member wants to practice 1/2 or 1 day a week for pay, they are doing so, not as VCU employees, but as a part-time employee of the other agency.

    In some cases the faculty practice in free clinics on a volunteer basis (not for pay).  When this is the case, we allow faculty to do this for up to 1/2 day a week as part of the "service" component of their workplan - in other words it is part of their paid job with the university. 

    In other cases we may have a contract for one of our faculty members to provide healthcare services to another entity.  In this case, the school is receiving salary support for that person's practice time (20% salary support for one day a week as an example). The faculty member does not receive the money as extra funds, but rather the school receives the funds in exchange for the faculty member's time.  In this case, the practice time is calculated as "practice" component of the workplan, in other words, it is part of their paid job with the school.

    Maybe more information than you wanted to know!

    Jean Giddens, PhD, RN, FAAN
    Dean and Professor
    Doris B. Yingling Endowed Chair
    VCU School of Nursing
    RWJF Nurse Executive Fellow Alumna

  • 4.  RE: Faculty Contracts and Release Time for Practice

    Posted 01-30-2020 06:49


    Faculty practice at R-MC falls within the scope of faculty scholarship for the College in maintaining clinical expertise. Faculty have the option to practice as it fits with their teaching and College responsibilities (and keep what they earn in practice). As we roll out our BSN program and our PA program starts soon, we may develop a more defined faculty practice plan.

    At Mercer University, faculty had two options. They could remain a full FTE and fit practice around their teaching and program responsibilities but no course scheduling considerations were made for these faculty members. The second option was to be a 0.8 FTE and have a protected day for practice. The salaries for these faculty reflected the reduction in teaching workload and their actual teaching workload was reduced by 20% based on their rank. For both of these practice options, faculty kept the earned income from practice. About half of our faculty teaching in the NP program opted for the 0.8 FTE option. It worked very well.


    Cindy Rubenstein, PhD, RN, CPNP-PC

    Director of Nursing and Professor

    Department of Nursing

    Randolph-Macon College

    Ashland, Virginia