Salpy Akaragian, director of the international nursing program and nurse credentialing for the UCLA Health System, was honored with a Giving Excellence Meaning Award in the category of Volunteerism and Service by Nurse.com on Aug. 23.
As director of the international nursing program, Akaragian has hosted visitors from more than 20 countries, coordinating education and training experiences for some 3,000 international visitors. She also is responsible for the credentialing of the health system's 160 nurse practitioners. Her efforts have resulted in implementation of children's health care screening programs provided by professional volunteers.
Akaragian was asked by the former First Lady of Armenia to establish the first baccalaureate nursing program in Armenia, which she accomplished with the help of multiple organizations and individuals. More than 400 nurses have graduated and are now nursing leaders in that country. Akaragian has had roles in multiple health care initiatives in Armenia as well as coordinating visits from Japanese health care and nursing leaders to observe American nursing practice and how nurses can impact patient care.