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UCM has enjoyed a reputation for an outstanding nursing program in large part to faculty members such as Donna “Candee” Baker, professor emerita of nursing. She contributed to a quality learning atmosphere in a high-demand field while serving the university and the Department of Nursing for 20 years. Baker officially retires from UCM in August 2012.
After joining Central Missouri in 1992, Baker taught pharmacological theory and lab, the medical-surgical clinical at the undergraduate level, and the undergraduate nursing elective, Nursing Informatics. Baker’s professional experiences included serving as a staff nurse for Deaconess Hospital and Columbus Hospital in Great Falls, Mont.; staff nurse for the University of Missouri-Columbia Hospital and Clinics Telemetry Unit; and a staff nurse/nurse manager and supervisor at Western Missouri Medical Center, Warrensburg.
During her tenure at UCM, Baker sought ways to improve the educational experience through grant projects that could enhance student learning. She secured at least $65,000 in grants from the Central Center for Academic Technology that were applied to projects dealing with use of the Internet for patient education, using multimedia production to enhance instruction, and for an electronic classroom, the largest of the three projects.
In addition to her work with students, Baker was involved in scholarly research, which included getting published in “Nurse Educator.” She also was invited to make presentations at professional events such as the Central College Health Association regional meeting, international Nursing Computer and Technology Conference for Rutgers University, Chicago Institute for Nursing Education and Missouri Nurses Association state conventions.
Baker earned a bachelor’s degree in nursing at Montana State University, Bozeman, and a Master of Science in Nursing degree with an administration focus at MU.