Volume 28 Issue No. 3

Winter 2014

 

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In This Issue

Editor's Note

President's Pen

Annual Conference

Senior Researcher Spotlight

Research Interest Group Corner

Doctoral Student Corner

 

Communications Committee

Donna Scott Tilley, Chair

 

Southern Connections Subcommittee

Denise Linton, Editor 

    

Editor's Note - Denise Linton, DNS, FNP-BC

It is my hope that you were able to spend some time with family and/or friends over the holiday season. I was able to spend time with my family, mentors, and friends in Jamaica, West Indies, where I was born. One of my plans was to reflect on a question that I have been asking myself; how did my past prepare me for my present? The answers were apparent during moments when I reminisced with my family and strolled or drove along streets that I frequented during my childhood. I visited the site of my kindergarten and elementary schools, the community library that was located five minutes away from my home, and spent time with my first grade teacher. Of course since this is many decades later there have been many changes - my kindergarten school has been renovated, elementary school relocated, and although the building that housed the library still exists it is no longer a library, it is a residence. I will continue to embrace the past but I will always look forward to the future, and for this year I anticipate an exciting 2015!  

 

One of my goals for this year is to disseminate the results of my 2014 research activities; this is in keeping with the mission of our Society. What are your plans regarding conducting research and disseminating research outcomes in 2015? I hope that you attend our 29th annual conference and be inspired in your journey as a nurse researcher.

 

President's Pen 

Cindy L. Munro, PhD, RN, ANP-BC,

 FAANP, FAAN, FAAAS 

As I became President of SNRS, I shared my desire that SNRS members would be engaged, enabled, and energized. In the last newsletter, I discussed the importance of member engagement. In this column, I'll focus on how SNRS enables our members as researchers.


 

The SNRS mission confirms that the organization "is committed to facilitating the career development of nurses and nursing students as researchers." Webster's Dictionary provides these definitions of "enable": "to make (someone or something) able to do or to be something," and "to make (something) possible, practical, or easy." I think these definitions apply directly to the benefits members receive from involvement with SNRS. In applying the generic definition to SNRS specifically, I want SNRS to be key in making members able to do research and to be researchers, and in making research possible, practical, and easier.

 

The upcoming SNRS annual conference centers on providing attendees with new knowledge, skills, and collaborations to enhance their ability to conduct nursing research. As we gather in Tampa, Florida, February 25-28, 2015, there will be multiple offerings designed to make nursing research more possible, more practical, and easier. Pre-conference workshops are excellent opportunities to explore an area in depth and hone specific skills. This year, a record number of workshops (seven!) are proposed!

 

Podium and poster sessions that focus on dissemination of completed research have always been the mainstay of the SNRS annual conference. Presentations of cutting edge research results enable attendees to apply new findings to their own area of research. At the 2014 SNRS conference, discussions among the SNRS Board, Deans, Directors, and Senior Scientists indicated an interest in providing more "how to" or "lessons learned" information about research and career development. In response, the Board is piloting a new type of session; the new "general sessions" are designed to offer a forum for senior scientists to share guidance about career issues, methodologic approaches, and other topics we think will enable nurses and nursing students to become more effective researchers. We will be interested in hearing from the attendees whether these general sessions are useful and whether they should be continued in future conferences.

 

Members' work is further enabled through interactions with peers. Networking events and receptions at the annual conference are excellent opportunities to catch up with old colleagues and develop new collaborations. Research Interest Group (RIG) meetings are particularly rich experiences, both at the conference and throughout the year.

 

The generous support of our members is critical to sustaining the SNRS grants which enable members to conduct research crucial to their research career development. Because we are committed to the career development of both nurse researchers and nursing students, providing research funding for regular members and student members is a priority. Research funding, targeted to nurse scientists, is particularly important for new investigators; we are proud to be able to fund two projects each year (one solely funded by SNRS, and one funded jointly by Sigma Theta Tau International and SNRS). Two dissertation grants are also awarded each year (one solely funded by SNRS, and one funded jointly by the Council for the Advancement of Nursing Science). We are actively seeking additional partnerships to support research funding. 

 

It is my hope that every member of SNRS will be better able to do research-enabled- as a result of their engagement in SNRS. I look forward to seeing you in Tampa (my home town!) at the annual conference in February 2015!

 

Serving SNRS, Cindy L. Munro, President 

Annual Conference

Marygrace Hernandez Leveille, PhD, RN, ACNP-BC

Vice President SNRS

 

The SNRS 29th Annual Conference is fast approaching! Please join us February 25-28, 2015 in Tampa. Florida. Saddlebrook Resort is the perfect venue for our conference theme, "Conducting Research in Difficult Times: Come Revitalize Your Research Spirit."

 

The Keynote speaker is Nancy Fugate Woods, PhD, RN, FAAN.  Dr. Woods is a premier nurse scientist whose investigations of women's health and health promotion have been substantially funded by NIH. She is Dean Emeritus at the University of Washington School of Nursing and past president of the American Academy of Nursing.  Her pathway to excellence and thoughts about revitalizing research will energize the conference. 

 

The conference program is packed with sessions, symposiums, podium presentations, poster discussions and poster sessions! A record number of pre-conferences (seven!) are open for registration. General Sessions are a new, exciting addition to this year's conference. Designed to facilitate the career development of novice and mid-career researchers, the General Sessions will feature presentations from our senior scientists, mid-career scientists, clinical nursing researchers and research interest groups. Unlike the research sessions, which focus on dissemination of completed research, the General Sessions are designed to provide opportunities for esteemed, seasoned SNRS scientists to share their wisdom and support new and mid-career scientists.

 

In addition to stimulating podium presentations, thought provoking poster discussion sessions and inspiring poster presentations, there are also activities designed to enhance informal communication and networking. The opening reception promises to be spectacular! The ten SNRS Research Interest Groups (RIGs) will meet during the conference, so members will have opportunities to talk to like-minded colleagues in Aging/Gerontology, Biobehavioral, Community Public Health/Health Promotion, Education, Health Systems/Health Policy, Minority Health Research, Parent-Child, Psychiatric/Mental Health¸ Qualitative¸ and Research in Clinical Settings RIGS.

 

The conference venue, Saddlebrook Resort, is the perfect place to relax, refresh, and revitalize your research spirit. Saddlebrook is a full service luxury resort, with five outstanding restaurants, 3 pools, two 18-hole Arnold Palmer signature golf courses, 45 tennis courts, and a Sports Village (Fitness Center and Elite Athletes Training Center). The Spa at Saddlebrook is superb! The resort is located on a 480 acre Florida nature preserve, and attendees will meet many Florida "natives" on the tropical resort grounds, including beautiful birds, tiny lizards, and alligators! Download the Saddlebrook nature guide by clicking here for a preview of the flora and fauna you may encounter.

 

Some very special activities are planned-aimed at revitalizing the over 500 researchers, clinicians and students who will attend the 29th annual conference. Put your sandals and sunglasses on and join us in sunny Florida, at the Saddlebrook Resort in February 2015! Come Revitalize Your Research Spirit!

 

Special Feature Corner: 

A Senior Researcher, Teresa Kelechi, PhD, CWCN, FAAN


 Dr. Teresa J. Kelechi is the David and Margaret Clare Endowed Chair and a Professor in the College of Nursing, Medical University of South Carolina (MUSC). She also is the Director of Recruitment, SUCCESS Center, of the Clinical & Translational Science Award (CTSA), MUSC. Her practice is in a residential care facility, where she provides foot care and geriatric consultation. Her education includes a BSN from Kent State University, a MSN in Gerontological Nursing from Case Western Reserve University, and a PhD in Nursing from the University of South Carolina/Medical University of South Carolina. She is a Certified Wound Care Nurse.

 

Dr. Kelechi's research focuses on venous leg ulcer (VLU) prevention.  Her work has resulted in an evidence-based, self-monitoring model using infrared technology to detect elevated skin temperature of the lower leg, a precursor to VLU development.  She is presently testing a self-management intervention in which a cooling cuff is placed around the lower leg to determine efficacy of its VLU prevention capacity when temperature is elevated. She has received funding from the National Institute of Nursing Research (NINR) for this study and also for a study of a wound powder applied to various types of wounds that develop at the end of life. She has also received funding from multiple external sources including Marine Polymer Technologies, the American Nurses Foundation, and the Wound Ostomy Continence Society. 

 

In addition to her success as a nurse scientist, Dr. Kelechi excels as an educator.  Her awards for excellence in teaching include U.S Professor of Year by The Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching and the Teaching Excellence Award and Educator-Mentor from the Health Sciences Foundation at MUSC. Dr. Kelechi shared her career path and counsel for young scientists in the following paragraphs. 

 

What influenced you to become a nurse scientist?  

I was frustrated as an advanced practice nurse and certified wound care nurse in not having the skill set to conduct research. I had numerous "questions" that I wanted to address in my clinical practice, such as ways to objectively measure inflamed areas of skin that I believed were at risk for ulcer development.  I also mentored students, both graduate, undergraduate and RNs who were taking a specialty wound care certification course and recognized I needed a terminal degree to augment my teaching with theoretical and conceptual underpinnings.  A faculty member, who was also a nurse scientist at the College for which I precepted these students kept pushing me to consider getting a PhD.  I finally succumbed!  So multiple factors influenced my decision: a spirit of inquiry, needing to be a "cut above" my students, and nudging from an esteemed nurse scientist.  I love intellectual challenges and jumped in with both feet!

  

What advice would you like to give aspiring nurse scientists?

Find that nurse scientist who is in your specialty/field and has obtained grants and is well published.  Introduce yourself and become his or her "nurse scientist in training."  Write together, offer to collect data, read his or her publications, offer ideas, invite him or her to be on your dissertation committee EARLY, Skype or email frequently . . . It is critical that you develop a relationship with a mentor very early in your development as this individual, while very busy with scholarship, teaching, administration and service, is very eager to "grow" the next generation of nurse scientists in the field.  

 

 

 Research Interest Group Corner: 

Melissa Batchelor-Aselage, PhD, RN-BC, FNP-BC  

 

Co-chair, Aging RIG

 

Happy New Year to everyone at SNRS from the Aging RIG!

Time has flown by and it's hard to believe that we are in the year 2015. I hope that you enjoyed the holiday season; best wishes for a productive 2015.

 

The Aging Research Interest Group (RIG) put out a call for three awards that were due December 15, 2014 and they will be awarded at the annual conference in February 2015. I would like to extend a special thank you to the colleagues who served as peer reviewers. The awards are for: (1) Distinguished Dissertation Award, (2) Rising Investigator Award, and (3) Excellence in Geriatric Nursing Research Mid-Career Award. Looking ahead, please consider submitting at the end of 2015 for the 2016 award cycle - the link to the awards criteria can be found by clicking here

 

Also, please be aware of a publication opportunity in Healthcare, a peer-reviewed, open-access journal. Dr. Tracey Yap and I are serving as the Guest Editors for a special issue focused on "Nursing Care of the Older Adult." The focus of this special issue is original theoretical or empirical work related to nursing care of the older adult.  Topics of interest include, but are not limited to: models of nursing care, care of older adults with chronic conditions, nursing interventions, concept analysis, literature reviews, research protocols, fidelity, and innovative methods. Submission Deadline is June 30, 2015. Click here for the Special Issue Link.

 

Doctoral Student Corner  

 

Sheila Jordan, RN, BSN, MPH - Emory University


 

Inspired to Shift Perspectives


 
Practicing as a registered nurse in a high volume labor and delivery unit in urban Atlanta I became inspired to pursue my doctorate in nursing. During my tenure I cared for a number of women presenting with complications associated with high blood pressure and observed their birthing experiences at the bedside. Sometimes these women are "prescribed" bed-rest in the hospital for monitoring which affects their ability to be at home caring for their family. Some women are enduring magnesium sulfate administration that can create a haze around their birth experience as well as delay breastfeeding initiation and bonding with their new baby. This ripple is extended if the baby has to spend time in the special care nursery as a result of being born pre-term or low birth weight.

 

Yes, on some levels the goal of a healthy mother and baby are eventually achieved, but I felt improvements could be made in caring for these developing families. I would be in constant contemplation about what could be done to help women both inside and outside of the hospital unit.  When was the last research done on the treatment plans we are using? What new things are being tried to help these patients have a better birth experience? And most importantly, what could have been done to prevent these complications in the first place? It was evident that it was time for me to approach nursing from another perspective.

 

I wanted to take on the role of generating new knowledge with research that will inform policy and evidenced based care of women so I decided to return to school to become a nurse scientist. I am specifically interested in expanding the research on chronic disease manifestations of pregnancy related hypertensive disorders, biological markers for preeclampsia, and preconception health interventions to help prevent preeclampsia. With roots as a public health professional, this focus is a natural progression of my career and inquiry as a nurse because it demands emphasis on prevention and health promotion. I wholeheartedly want to be a part of bringing reproductive justice to all women and expanding research in these areas will do just that.


 

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