University of Missouri Extension – Sinclair School of Nursing, Enhanced Leadership Development Academy (ELDA)

The Challenge

For over 10 years the University of Missouri Extension and the Sinclair School of Nursing had offered the Enhanced Leadership Development Academy (ELDA) to health professionals working in long-term care facilities. The program included in-person courses focused on improving quality of care through leadership training. Though participants struggled to attend in-person classes due to busy schedules, and faculty faced room capacity limits, only allowing a certain number of learners to complete the program from the start. Dwindling enrollment for ELDA prompted program coordinators at University of Missouri Extension and Sinclair School of Nursing to team up with Vivayic and move the program to an entirely virtual format in 2017.

The Solution

ELDA, now a virtual academy, offers a free, best-in-class online learning experience to registered nurses (RN) and nursing home administrators (NHA). Using educational technologies and applying adult learning theories, these long-term care professionals receive model curriculum to accelerate the development of their leadership behaviors and abilities. ELDA adapts to the needs of the participants while also embracing new ways to deliver content and facilitate learning with available technology.

The modules are realistic and relevant to the challenges participants face every day. From leading through change, to managing different generations, each online module is crafted to authentically guide learners through difficult topics as they navigate leadership in long-term care facilities. University of Missouri Extension, Sinclair School of Nursing, and Vivayic facilitated a multi-day media shoot where long-term care professionals from the state of Missouri were interviewed and recorded to be module narrators, sharing their personal stories as real-life teaching examples within the courses. The courses also include decision tree scenarios, on the job training activities, instructor led videos, audio clips and interactive eLearning interactions to transform the online training into a virtual experience.

The Outcome

The virtual ELDA academy allows learners to choose relevant course topics that fit within their daily schedules. To date, there have been 285 RNs and NHAs who have graduated from the program, representing 388 nursing homes across Missouri. Participants are awarded with continuing education (CE) credit for successfully completing modules, earning up to 54.5 hours of nationally recognized CE credit to apply to licenses, job certification, and recertification. In 2021 alone, 59 participants enrolled and completed 57 modules for 259 hours of CE credit. These long-term care professionals are equipped to display high qualities of leadership and sustain desired change by improving resident outcomes, staff retention, and positively impacting others through quality care.

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