Proud to Be a Nurse Practitioner

National Nurse Practitioner Week

Late last year, we celebrated Nurse Practitioner Week, highlighting each of our outstanding NP faculty.  As the ONLY nursing school in the UC system with faculty in clinical practice, we have a lot to celebrate. 

National Nurse Practitioner Week is held in recognition of the exceptional work and accomplishments of the 234,000 hardworking nurse practitioners across the country.  Among them are eight very special nurse practitioners, who are members of our Sue & Bill Gross School of Nursing faculty, including:

  • Susan Tiso, DNP, APRN, FNP-BC, FAANP - "Because of the education and experience I have as an NP, I am able to make a difference in the lives of people and have an impact on their health and wellbeing -- this may include educating them about critical lifestyle changes or treating an episodic ailment, like an infection.  I also am honored that patients trust me enough to let me into their lives... to disclose important personal information that may be influencing their health and creating risks."
  • Leah Centanni, MSN, FNP-C - "I chose the career of a nurse practitioner as I wanted to be able to provide quality, holistic care to underserved populations, both locally and globally.  I felt the best way for me to achieve this aim was as a nurse practitioner.  I love playing a supportive part in the pathway to health for my patients and their families."
  • Elizabeth Symanski, MSN, FNP - "One of my favorite moments in practice is seeing a patient's face light up when they understand something about their health that was confusing.  The best thing about being an NP is connecting with individuals and families to share the information and empowering support they need to make the best health choices available.  The holistic philosophy of nursing combined with the advanced training I received to be a nurse practitioner are making me a more effective advocate and partner or my patients."
  • Sarah Campbell, MSN, RN, FNP-C - "I love being an NP because I love developing relationships with people.  Part of why I chose private practice is because I love getting to know and providing care for a whole family - the grandparents, adult children, young adult grandchildren.  It really helps me to understand where they are coming from and knowing the family dynamics and personalities makes me feel like I have a deeper connection with the family as a whole."
  • Candice Whealon, MS, FNP-C - "I chose to be an NP because I was looking for a career that would allow me to grow professionally as a nurse and continue to work clinically.  Now that I am an NP I am confident I made the right decision.  I have had opportunities to contribute to my community indirectly through my leadership and educational roles and directly at the bedside.  My responsibilities continue to grow along with my job satisfaction."
  • Susie Phillips, DNP, APRN, FNP-BC, FAANP - "My career choice to become a faculty member and family nurse practitioner centered around increased and improved professional practice responsibility and the flexibility of the academic world.  I have an entrepreneurial as well as entrepreneurial spirit, which has led me to develop, own, manage and practice in a community-based nurse practitioner practice within a major academic nursing school in collaboration with an academic medical center.  The autonomy this profession provides, ability to practice in an interdisciplinary collaborative environment, and the ability to train a new generation of care providers within a nursing context is what drove me into the profession and has kept me grounded for 21 years of practice."

"Nurse practitioners are specialized nursing professionals that offer a unique combination of nursing and healthcare service to patients. They provide a wide range of healthcare services including everything from diagnosing and managing acute and chronic illnesses, to integrating health promotion, disease prevention, counseling and patient education to help patients understand their complete health picture," said Founding Dean Adey Nyamathi. "We are proud to be a part of Nurse Practitioner Week and to have the opportunity of celebrating our own NPs."


Nurse Practitioner Week is a program of the American Association of Nurse Practitioners (AANP), the largest professional membership organization for nurse practitioners (NPs) of all specialties.