Shanna W. Akers, EdD, MSN/MBA-HC, RN, CNE, NEA-BCProvost and Executive VP of Academic Affairs
Dr. Shanna W. Akers is an Educational Leader and a Registered Nurse with over 27 years of nursing leadership experience. As a former critical care (cardiac ICU and trauma ICU) nurse who served as the Director of the Cardiovascular Service Line of a two-hospital system and a Professor of Nursing and Nursing School Dean, Dr. Akers seeks to support the Authority in creating a robust, diverse health care workforce for the Commonwealth. Currently serving as the Provost and Executive Vice President for Academic Affairs for Covenant Journey Academy, Dr. Akers has over 14 years’ experience in higher education serving as an institutional Administrative Dean for Undergraduate Programs and as Dean and Professor for one the largest Schools of Nursing in the nation, where she taught across all program levels, including course like leadership, ethics and policy, nursing education, and programmatic assessment.
Dr. Akers completed her nursing licensure program at Louisiana Tech University, her bachelor’s degree in the Science of Nursing from Virginia Commonwealth University, and her Master’s of the Science of Nursing and Master’s of Business Administration. Her Educational Specialist (EdS): Educational Leadership post-graduate degree was awarded in 2011, and her Doctor of Education (EdD): Curriculum and Instruction was awarded in 2015. Her dissertation assessed the relationship between clinical and simulation experiences and knowledge and self-efficacy of critical care nursing students. She is dedicated to impacting health care and education through leadership, professional development, and personal relationships.
Dr. Akers has published multiple scholarly articles related to education and nursing in various professional journals and has written for local publications encouraging health care providers as well as meeting the health care educational needs of patients. Dr. Akers has presented locally and nationally at professional conferences including Sigma Theta Tau International Congress and Sigma’s 33rd International Nursing Research Congress, and she has also spoken at various universities, hospitals, and student associations. She has presented internationally at the All-India Institute for Medical Sciences in New Delhi, India, as well as for the Malankara Orthodox Syrian Church (MOSC) College of Nursing in Kolenchery, India, and the Ganesh Shankar Vidyarthi Memorial Medical College in Kanpur, India. She serves on the editorial board for a professional nursing research journal.
Dr. Akers is a member of several regional and national organizations, including the Association for Leadership Science in Nursing, Christian Nurses Fellowship, Virginia Nurses Association (VNA), and Sigma Theta Tau International. She is a Certified Nurse Educator (CNE) and board certified as a Nurse Executive-Advanced (NEA-BC). Dr. Akers was a 2018 AACN-Wharton Executive Leadership Fellow and participated in the AACN-Advancing Academic Leadership program. She is currently the Commissioner of Nursing Education for the VNA. Her areas of research include education, spiritual care, impact of religiosity in health care, forgiveness, and the role of the nurse on patient outcomes, the health care industry, and education.