ASU Clinical Research Management program first in country to earn prestigious accreditation

Accreditation represents a big step in recognizing clinical research as an academic discipline

October 25, 2018

From Band-Aid’s to medical devices and aspirin to prescription drugs — before any of these items make it to your local convenience store or hospital, they all first must go through clinical trials.

At Arizona State University’s College of Nursing and Health Innovation, students are prepared at a high level to oversee all stages of clinical trials for health and medical products through the master's in clinical research management program. Stock image connecting clinical research stages Download Full Image

“We know that we’ve developed a quality program that prepares students to do their job and lead at their organizations,” said JoAnn Pfeiffer, the director of clinical research management programs at the college.

Now, there’s national recognition affirming what the program’s creators and graduates have been saying since it began a decade ago.

This fall, the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs voted unanimously to fully accredit the clinical research management program, making it the first in the country to receive this distinction.

CAAHEP is the largest programmatic accreditor in the health sciences field.

“This is the gold standard for academic excellence, and being chosen as the first and only program in the country to receive this accreditation is a testament to the tireless efforts of our program director and faculty who have created programs that not only meet industry needs but propel graduates into decision-making and problem-solving roles,” said Judith Karshmer, nursing and health innovation dean.

Clinical research management is considered a newer field; it has only been around for the last 10 to 15 years. In fact, this is the first time that national competencies have been developed to measure academic programs for this discipline, and ASU was first in line to apply.

With a robust curriculum, Pfeiffer was confident throughout the application process. When she found out about the accreditation, she shared the good news with graduates and current students, none of whom were surprised.

“I have been looking for the right master’s program for a while before I committed to the clinical research management, regulatory science program and this news not only confirms that I chose the right degree, but also makes me feel like I am in the right place at the right time. Even after just completing one class, I can already see the growth and value, and I am excited to be part of such a thriving department and program,” student Simona Janisch said.

In total, there were three programs accredited. The master’s in clinical research management, master’s in clinical research management with regulatory science concentration and the certificate program in clinical research management.

All of these courses are online and specifically designed for professionals.

“It requires six months experience to be eligible, so all of our students are out there working in the field,” Pfeiffer said. “What they're after is getting more leadership and management experience, building their skill base and their knowledge base to move into higher-level positions.”

The next session begins in January 2019, and enrollment is now open.

Amanda Goodman

Senior communications specialist, Edson College of Nursing and Health Innovation


ASU rises in rankings as producer of Teach for America teachers for 2018

October 25, 2018

For the fourth consecutive year, Arizona State University has been named among the top producers of Teach for America corps members, according to 2018 rankings released by Teach for America, the national nonprofit that enlists recent college graduates to teach for two years in high-need urban and rural public schools.

In 2018, ASU climbed in the rankings to the top three, up from No. 4 in 2017, among large institutions included in the 680 contributing colleges and universities. Chloe Lopez Teach for America Chloé López, a recent ASU graduate and first-year Teach for America corps member, teaches fourth grade at Maryvale Preparatory Academy in west Phoenix. Download Full Image

Katie Stephens-Rich, Teach for America recruitment manager at ASU, said the 2018 corps includes 55 Sun Devil undergraduate alumni. Since ASU’s partnership with Teach for America began in 2006, 469 ASU alumni have completed the Teach for America corps experience.

She noted that the newest group is one of the most diverse corps in the organization’s history, with 64 percent identifying as a person of color, 62 percent coming from low-income backgrounds and 58 percent identifying as first-generation college graduates. 

“We are thrilled that ASU is once again a top-contributing university with Teach for America,” said Julia Tebben, program coordinator, senior for Strategic Initiatives and University Partnerships with ASU’s Career and Professional Development Services. “This ranking reflects the incredible partnership between ASU and TFA, and the hard work of our respective staff members and students.”

Tebben noted that this ranking showcases the dedication to social embeddedness highlighted within the ASU Charter.

“Many of our Sun Devil alumni are placed in Arizona schools, empowering students and fostering college readiness,” she said.

Chloé López is a recent ASU graduate and a first-year Teach for America corps member. She completed her BA in political science and double minors in women and gender studies, and justice studies in December 2017 and is now teaching fourth grade at Maryvale Preparatory Academy in west Phoenix.

A first-generation college student and a Latina with Arizona roots, López said her decision to participate in TFA was informed by her great-grandparents' experience with educational inequalities due to racial segregation as well as the challenges she witnessed during her own education that illustrated how those inequalities persisted.

“When the ASU Teach for America recruiter reached out, I knew I had both a civic and personal duty to help offer students in my own community a chance at an excellent education,” López said.

Though early in her tenure with TFA, López said the experience has been an empowering one.

“Between personal development meetings from both my school and Teach for America, school leadership positions and general comradery, I have never felt so empowered than I am now by my fellow school staff and 2018–2017 corps members,” she said.

The returns from this broad network of support all stream back to López’s classroom and students, who she says “challenge me to continually pursue being a better leader, person and thinker for them and myself because they and I know we cannot afford to be otherwise.”

“ASU and TFA’s partnership promotes a sense of civic duty and personal development that is unrivaled,” López said. “I believe ASU has the best university partnership in the country, and this belief is backed by Dr. Crow’s clear understanding of TFA’s mission and support since the 2006 TFA/ASU partnership he sought to form.”

She believes that “Sun Devils are the very changemakers classrooms need” and that the 2018 TFA recruitment year statistics are proof of this idea.

López plans to continue making a difference for students by completing her Master of Education from the Mary Lou Fulton Teachers College and either an EdD or PhD at ASU.

Copy writer and editor, Educational Outreach and Student Services