UHart Dean Named Among Top Women in Business

April 04, 2023
Submitted By: Office of Marketing and Communication
Cesarina Thompson

University of Hartford Dean Cesarina Thompson has been named as one of the Top 25 Women in Business in Greater Hartford by the Hartford Business Journal. 

Thompson has served as dean of UHart’s College of Education, Nursing, and Health Professions since 2018 and will be honored May 4 at the Aqua Turf Club in Plantsville. The Top 25 Women in Business list recognizes those making a significant difference in industries and organizations that range from accounting and banking, to the legal sector, to nonprofits.

As UHart wrote in Thompson’s nomination, “She is a barrier-breaker, a fierce ally of students, a non-stop idea generator, a health-care professional and a leader in business, and the higher education partner you want teaming up with your organization.”

Thompson has ushered in a new era for ENHP: She’s launched an undergraduate nursing major, a doctor of nursing practice graduate degree, exercise science and occupational therapy programs, and certificate and residency programs in advanced orthopedic physical therapy. The undergraduate nursing major has shown rapid growth and is the largest major of new students across UHart for this academic year.   

Clinical rotations accompany many of those degrees, which has meant forging new partnerships with facilities across the state, and expanding existing ties. 

Thompson was also instrumental in ensuring that health profession students would learn with state-of-the-art technology in UHart’s new Hursey Center, and she’s also made diversity, equity, and inclusion is a growing priority within ENHP. Shes ensuring the curriculum creates intentional learning experiences focused on DEI to help students consider the backgrounds and perspectives of their patients.

But Thompson is also focused on making sure future nurses and teachers want to remain in their chosen industries. As the state grapples with a shortage of workers in both areas, she’s bringing everyone to the table for open discussions on recruitment and retention. 

As UHart wrote in Thompson’s nomination, “For Ces, challenges and problems are before us to be tackled and solved, not to steal our confidence or momentum. That’s why the health care labor shortage is an issue she’s compelled to march toward, instead of shy away from. Knowing these issues affect us all—as patients, as community members, as business owners, as instructors and students—Thompson brings everyone into the conversation for problem-solving.”