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The nursing faculty at Oklahoma Baptist University are on a mission under Dr. Lepaine Sharp-McHenry, Dean of the College of Nursing.

The nationwide nursing shortage has been grabbing headlines for decades.
But go into America’s nursing schools and there’s an even bigger problem.
Nursing faculty are getting older, retiring or leaving education altogether to chase bigger paychecks.
Dr. Lepaine Sharp-McHenry, Dean of the Oklahoma Baptist University College of Nursing sees all the statistics.
But she’s determined her students and faculty won’t be one of them.
Sharp-McHenry notes that OBU is one of the only nursing school in Oklahoma that doesn’t have an enrollment cap. That’s because OBU is growing its program by growing its faculty, moving towards 100-percent doctorally prepared educators.
“You have to have the best people in the classroom,” Sharp-McHenry said. “I think taking them to that next level in their educational journey is only going to make us better as a program and also the learning experience in the classroom for students will be enhanced.”
“As nurse educators we really have a responsibility to invest in, nurture and support the next generation of nursing faculty.”
Nationwide, the statistics are alarming.
According to American Association of Colleges of Nursing report on 2016-2017 Enrollment and Graduations in Baccalaureate and Graduate Programs in Nursing, U.S. nursing schools turned away 64,067 qualified applicants from baccalaureate and graduate nursing programs in 2016 due to an insufficient number of faculty, clinical sites, classroom space, clinical preceptors, and budget constraints.
Most nursing schools responding to the survey pointed to faculty shortages as a reason for not accepting all qualified applicants into baccalaureate programs.
According to a Special Survey on Vacant Faculty Positions released by AACN in October 2016, a total of 1,567 faculty vacancies were identified in a survey of 821 nursing schools with baccalaureate and/or graduate programs across the country.
Besides the vacancies, schools cited the need to create an additional 133 faculty positions to accommodate student demand. The data shows a national nurse faculty vacancy rate of 7.9%. Most of the vacancies (92.8%) were faculty positions requiring or preferring a doctoral degree.
“Oklahoma is not exempt from that,” Sharp-McHenry said. “The average age of nurses now is getting higher and higher and Baby Boomers that are nursing faculty are nearing retirement. Another factor that is challenging is it’s really hard for us to compete with salaries in practice for nursing educators.”
Doctoral programs aren’t producing a large enough pool to draw from either.
So that’s why Sharp-McHenry challenged her faculty: Become doctorally prepared and change the profession.
Sharp-McHenry smiles when she ticks off the list of faculty members one by one who have finished, are finishing or just beginning their doctoral work.
“We’re committed to it because we know the difference it will make in the learning experience of the students and also their contribution to nursing knowledge through their scholarly work,” Sharp-McHenry said. “Being able to have a faculty at that level in the classroom with the students is going to really improve that learning experience.”
“And as a faith-based institution I personally believe if we’re going to educate nurses then we should be doing it at the absolute best level possible.”
Sharp-McHenry understands the importance and responsibility nurses have in developing the next generation of nurses.
She joined the OBU faculty in 2013. Previously at the University of Arkansas, she served as assistant director of the Eleanor Mann School of Nursing. She has served as nursing faculty in graduate and undergraduate education.
Her diverse background has afforded her the opportunity to work in nursing practice, regulation, and education.
She is the founding president of the Arkansas Directors of Nursing Administration in Long Term Care Association and Past Vice President of the National Association of Directors of Nursing Administration in Long Term Care. McHenry chaired the Transition to Practice Committee for the National Council of State Boards of Nursing and served as the Vice President of this organization.
She is a member of the AACN Board of Directors for the American Association for Colleges of Nursing and former member of the AACN Finance Committee. She also serves as a site evaluator for CCNE.
Sharp-McHenry started as an ADN out of Southern Arkansas University but she wasn’t going to stop there. She earned her BSN at the University of Arkansas-Fayetteville before coming to the Sooner State for her MSN at the University of Oklahoma – Tulsa.
Her DNP followed a while later at Union University.
“I’m excited where we are on this journey,” Sharp-McHenry said. “In a few years most of our faculty will be doctorally prepared. That’s exciting for the college. It’s exciting for the student but it’s also exciting for their personal accomplishment.”



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Students can now pursue their RN to BSN at Oklahoma State University online.

Oklahoma State University is helping grow the next generation of nurses by offering a new RN to BSN program.
Mary Malaska is the new director of the Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) online degree program at Oklahoma State University, where she also serves as an assistant professor on the Stillwater campus.
The new RN to BSN program offers registered nurses who have completed an accredited associate’s degree or diploma program the opportunity to earn their bachelor’s degree in nursing to enrich and expand their careers.
Malaska, who holds a doctorate in nursing practice from Duquesne University, received her associate’s degree in nursing from OSU-OKC in 1978 and is a certified nurse instructor.
She was named Nurse of the Year in 2011 at INTEGRIS Baptist Medical Center, where she provided care to new mothers, infants and female surgical patients as a staff nurse from 1997-2016.
Malaska has served in several positions at the OSU-OKC campus, including associate professor and division head of health sciences. She was also the team leader of the Nursing Care of Vulnerable Populations teaching team, which assisted nursing students and provided clinical supervision. She received the Dean Stringer Excellence in Teaching Award from OSU-OKC in 2007.
Malaska earned a Bachelor of Science in Nursing from the University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center in 1993, and a Master of Science in Nursing Education from the University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center in 1996.
Offered in the College of Education, Health & Aviation, the online program is designed for individuals who have obtained Registered Nurse licensure and have successfully completed either an accredited associate’s degree or diploma program.
The BSN at OSU-Stillwater delivers coursework 100 percent online over three successive semesters and is designed for working adult learners. Each student will have an advisor who provides system guidance, support with online activities, and serves as a mentor while navigating the online degree process.
The OSU RN to BSN program concept is unique because of the health and wellness concentration of the degree. The College of Education, Health & Aviation includes a strong health focus with programs in health education and promotion, applied exercise science, recreational therapy, physical education, and counseling and counseling psychology.
The program plans to seek accreditation through the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education by the American Association of Colleges of Nursing.
With a national focus on the need to prepare more registered nurses with advanced education, OSU and the College of Education, Health & Aviation welcome the opportunity to provide a quality program that will produce leaders in clinical nursing practice.
“The new Bachelor of Science in Nursing program meets an expressed need for the state’s health care community and it expands the emphasis on health that is present in the College of Education, Health & Aviation. We are excited to offer a high-quality program that will produce more nurses with advanced education for Oklahoma, the region and the U.S.,” says College of Education, Health & Aviation Dean John Romans.


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Welcome to the Uniform Shoppe! The Uniform Shoppe is family owned and operated and has been in business since 1962. That is 56 years and they are still going strong!
“At the Uniform Shoppe, our goal is to focus on the customer and make sure that they are happy while they are here, helping them in any way that we can,” said Amina Dennis, manager of The Uniform Shoppe in Tulsa, OK.
Have you ever wondered how The Uniform Shoppe came about? It all began with Albert and Elaine Weise in 1962. They were the first ones in the country to start a boutique style store for uniforms and scrubs. Imagine that, not having a place to buy scrubs.
“Many times, my parents would bring me and my sisters along in the backseat of the station wagon. That was because they were building a business and they couldn’t afford a sitter at that time. I can still remember being in the back seat of that car,” Jody said with a grin. “My dad’s sister and brother-in-law stayed in Tulsa to run the store,” she added.
Now that spring is here, The Uniform Shoppe has many scrubs to choose from. There are so many new colors and styles. Lots of spring colors to brighten your day! Did you know The Uniform Shoppe has more than just a variety of name brand scrubs? They carry shoes and nursing accessories. They are also an authorized dealer of Littman stethoscopes. In-house monogramming and logo services, digitizing, alterations and silkscreen are also offered. One of the staff members will be happy to work with you, visiting your office, school, hospital or clinic, helping to create an individual, unique, professional image. You will surely appreciate their attention to detail.
The Uniform Shoppe has changed a lot over the years. They are proud of their business and have enjoyed watching it grow. Their locations are: 10503 N. May Ave. Oklahoma City, OK 73120 (in the Village Park Shopping Center) and 6044 S. Sheridan Rd. Tulsa, OK 74145 (recently relocated) Both stores are open Monday through Saturday 9:30-6:00 p.m.
I talked with Amina Dennis, store manager at the Tulsa location. She is a pleasant individual that had nothing but good things to say about The Uniform Shoppe. “Our goal is to focus on the customer, making sure they are completely satisfied with their purchases. We are always willing to help our customers any way that we can,” said Amina.
“I have been with The Uniform Shoppe for 2 years now and I have to tell you how much I enjoy working here. I love my job because we work together as a family. We pride ourselves on giving the customer a great experience,” Amina said. “My favorite part about working at The Uniform Shoppe is getting to know my customers and being able to easily help others with their needs and wants in a uniform,” she added. “I also enjoy the Big-Semi Annual Sales too, usually in January and July. We also run some great specials for Nurse’s Week too. On behalf of The Uniform Shoppe, we would like to thank all of our loyal customers. We look forward to seeing you.


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Angi Mohr, RN, Executive Vice President, COO/CNO at SSM Health Shawnee.

For the majority of her nursing career, Angi Mohr, RN, took it one patient at a time.
That patient, that moment, that diagnosis was what drove the emergency department nurse.

But it was only when she moved into a management role at SSM Health Shawnee that she discovered she could make decisions that would help hundreds if not thousands of patients at a time.
Mohr, Executive Vice President, COO/CNO, has been in the health care profession for more than 25 years.
She’s responsible for improving patient experiences, while being responsible for supporting, upholding, and implementing the hospital’s mission and values.
She graduated with an Associate’s Degree in Nursing in 1992 from Seminole State College and completed her Bachelors in Nursing in 2002. In 2009, she graduated with honors from St. Gregory’s University with a Masters in Management.
She has been with the hospital for more than a quarter century and has worked as an Emergency Department staff nurse, Director of Emergency Department, and Assistant Vice President of Nursing.
“I will have been at this hospital 26 years in March,” Mohr said. “I love the hometown feel of our community hospital. I love knowing we provide exceptional care for people I live among and my family goes to school with.”
“I work with a tremendous group of people. I can’t imagine not coming to work every day and not seeing them.”
Mohr has been honored with numerous awards recognizing her professional excellence and dedication to nursing.
Her first job out of school took her into labor and delivery. From there she transitioned to the emergency department and fell in love.
“It seemed to be a better fit for me,” she said. “I loved the adrenaline and the fast pace. I spent the majority of my career in the emergency department.”
But it was only when she moved into the role of vice president of nursing that she was able to get the bird’s-eye view of what healthcare really was.
“It was really more of a high-level view of all nursing departments,” Mohr said. “As an ED nurse it’s all just outpatient from that point of view. When I stepped into that assistant vice president role I had to broaden my view to all scopes of nursing and how they worked with each other.”
The adrenaline Mohr thrived on in the emergency department changed forms to the adrenaline of overseeing an entire continuum of care.
That’s why she continued to advance until she settled at the top in her current role as chief operating officer and chief nursing officer.
Inpatient and outpatient, it all comes back to Mohr.
“I really felt the transition was a smooth one and I believe it had a lot to do with the fact the CNO was a good mentor for me,” Mohr said. “She included me in a lot of her daily duties and her scope of practice and how she did her job. I felt like she did a great job of grooming me.”
Mohr has served as chief operating officer since 2014.
Having all those years of bedside experience brought a certain depth to the way Mohr approached decisions affecting nursing.
“I love it when we can make changes that will make their day-to-day work go easier,” Mohr said. “As a nurse I can understand how hard it is in that role. Every time a new implementation comes out I understand it’s a stress on them.”
“I enjoy working with the current nursing leaders to help ease that transition.”
SSM Health is a Catholic not-for-profit health system serving the comprehensive health needs of communities across the Midwest through a robust and fully integrated health care delivery system.
Headquartered in St. Louis, SSM Health has care delivery sites in Missouri, Illinois, Oklahoma and Wisconsin. The health system includes 24 hospitals, more than 300 physician offices and other outpatient care sites, 10 post-acute facilities, comprehensive home care and hospice services, a pharmacy benefit company, an insurance company, a technology company and an Accountable Care Organization.


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Students like Ian Donovan are advancing their careers with help from instructors like Lorain McKay, R.N., at Moore Norman Technology Center

This June Ian Donovan will graduate as a licensed practical nurse from Moore Norman Technology Center.
After 10 months of study, he’ll enter a career field he’s dreamed about.
Donovan’s original education track took him through the University of Oklahoma with a degree in multidisciplinary studies degree.
But with a family full of medical professionals – including a grandmother and sister who are nurses – Donovan always felt the pull toward the medical field.
“It works on multiple levels,” Donovan explained of nursing. “There’s a selfish aspect because you want to find something that’s fulfilling and then there’s the aspect where you’re helping people. And you’re working in the medical field and I’ve always wanted to do that.”
Pursuing his registered nursing license as well as a BSN are in Donovan’s future.
In fact, nearly 90 percent of Moore Norman Technology Center practical nursing graduates go on to advance their nursing education.
The way he’s learning at MNTC is just a good start.
“As far as the classroom I like the way we learn,” he said. “We learn in writing, practice it and within a week or so we’re hands-on. In clinicals you get to see the circle of life.”
Lorain McKay, MSN, RN, is one of Donovan’s instructors. It’s her job to make sure he’s prepared to enter the medical field this summer.
“I think what any nursing instructor wants is for their students to walk away feeling at least a competent novice and they feel strong enough to go out there and on their first job learn the additional skills they will need,” McKay said. “None of us graduate (knowing it all). We want them to leave with those competencies and those ethics.
“Personally, I also want them to leave nursing school with a passion for nursing.”
That passion is vital to being a success in nursing. But nursing isn’t for everyone.
That’s why McKay likes the path MNTC lays out for those wanting to get into health care in as little as 10 months.
“It lets them get into the medical field and get a taste of it and understand whether they like it or not,” McKay said. “You can also work in the field and see if you like it and go on. It’s a great stepping stone.”
McKay didn’t start her career 25 years ago as an LPN but often wishes she would have.
“It starts at the bedside and then each step after that goes a little bit more and a little bit more,” she said. “This is the starting of it and where you really set your habits.”
“There are many health systems that are going back to team nursing,” McKay continued. “I think we’ll see in the next few years LPNs having a lot more opportunities in the acute-care setting. Bringing those different levels back into the hospital will really add a depth that I don’t think people realize they’re missing.”
The practical nursing application period is now open until noon on Friday, May 18, 2018 for classes beginning August 2018 for the daytime session.
Applications for the evening session will continue to be received until noon on Thursday, September 27, 2018, or until further notice.
This program prepares students to care for ill, injured, convalescent, and disabled patients in hospitals, clinics, doctor’s offices, private homes, long term care facilities, other medical care facilities, and even clinical research.
Duties vary depending on each state’s nurse practice act (regulations). Students provide basic nursing care, perform assessments and administer care to clients under the direct supervision of physicians, dentists or registered nurses. They are responsible for supervision of Certified Nurse Aides, Certified Medication Aides, and Advanced Unlicensed Assistants.


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Carol Robison, BSN, RN, partner at Gifted Healthcare, says Oklahoma’s greatest nurses will be honored during her company’s Great 100 Nurses event.

Great 100 nominations needed

We have all met an outstanding nurse whose courage, stamina, and compassion makes a difference.
Those nurses go about their jobs each and every day with no recognition.
For Carol Robison, RN, partner at Gifted Healthcare, that’s something that needs to change.
That’s the whole reason behind the upcoming Great 100 Nurses event coming this September in Catoosa.
Robison noted that this year a large metro hospital system in Oklahoma has challenged its leaders to nominate at least 10 nurses for the event, which draws nearly 800 attendees.
“I think nurses have an extremely difficult job and often they’re not recognized for what they do,” Robison said. “This event is sometimes the only recognition that nurse has gotten in a long career. That really makes a difference in someone’s life.”
Making the nurse walk taller is a tenet of the event.
“I think this event really exemplifies that,” she said.
The Great 100 Nurses Foundation was founded by Robison’s friend and partner PK Scheerle, RN in New Orleans, Louisiana 32 years ago. Since its founding, the Great 100 Celebrations have honored thousands of Nurses across Louisiana, North Carolina, Texas, Oklahoma and now Arkansas.
These exemplary nurses are selected based on their concern for humanity, their contributions to the profession of nursing, and their mentoring of others.
Robison takes great pride in the program. Each year, community, health care, government leaders, family, friends and peers join together to honor these Great 100 nurses.
The funds raised through the celebration are used not only to honor the nurses you will meet at the annual celebrations, but to also support nursing advocacy, nursing scholarships, and nursing research for the betterment of lives, publication of nursing discoveries and the implementation of those discoveries.
Robison believes The Great 100 Nurses Celebration belongs to everyone who has met and been touched by an exceptional nurse.
Now you can honor that special nurse who has exemplified concern for humanity, dedication to the great profession of nursing, and the mentoring of others by nominating them to be a member of the Great 100.
Nominees must currently be a registered nurse in the state of their nomination and not been previously selected as a Great 100 Honoree. For the Oklahoma Celebration, the completed nomination form must be received no later than July 3, 2018 to be eligible for consideration.
Forms may be completed electronically and emailed to nominations@g100nurses.org, faxed to 504-217-5468, or mailed to the address on the form. Nomination forms are available online at www.g100nurses.org.
Announcement of the Great 100 Nurses for Oklahoma will be made in early August 2018.
Each Great 100 Nurse will receive a certificate and custom pin in honor of their accomplishments.
You may nominate as many qualified nurses as you feel appropriate.
An anonymous panel of nurses select the Great 100 Nurse Honorees based on the following criteria:
* How has your nominee shown concern for humanity?
* What do you consider your nominee’s most significant contribution to the profession?
* How has your nominee served as a mentor or role model for others?
“One of the things that is interesting about our event is it can be peers, patients or family members that nominate that person,” Robison said.
The event will be held Monday, September 10 at the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino in Catoosa.
Tracey Moffatt will be the keynote speaker at the event, which features a sit-down dinner.


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Lorri Bundy-Myers serves as weekend house supervisor at OSU Medical Center in Tulsa.

Nursing has changed a lot in the 27 years Lorri Bundy-Myers, BSN, RN has been in the profession.
But one thing that hasn’t waivered has been her love affair with what she does.
Bundy-Myers has been at OSU Medical Center for the last four years.
She expects to be there a lot longer.
“It’s a smaller hospital,” Bundy-Myers said of the 195-bed facility in downtown Tulsa. “I came from a larger hospital. I like the feel of a smaller hospital. I have more of an opportunity to be a mentor and a leader and share my experience and learn a lot along the way. And it’s a teaching facility. I get to see (students) first walk through the doors and then walk out when they graduate.”
“That in itself is very cool.”
Bundy-Myers works Saturdays and Sundays as house supervisor.
It’s her time to shine.
“I do it all. I start IV’s. I’m transport. I’m mediator, I fill in when administration is not there,” Bundy-Myers said. “I wear many different hats and I like that. I like having that autonomy.”
She’s always been drawn to situations where she can take charge. She served as a rapid response nurse and code blue nurse.
She previously served as a mid-level at a hospital on night shift working for a group of hospitalists answering pages and assigning patients.
“I’ve also been an ICU nurse,” said Bundy-Myers, who started as a monitor tech in 1985. “That’s pretty much all I know is ICU and trauma. That’s where my heart has always been.”
OSU Medical Center is one of the largest osteopathic teaching hospitals in the nation and serves as the official teaching hospital for the Oklahoma State University College of Osteopathic Medicine, a 2009 U.S. News and World Report Top Ranked Graduate School.
“There’s a lot of teamwork,” she said. “You’re able to share the knowledge you have with the physicians and residents and work together as a team to have better outcomes with these patients. Our nurses’ opinions and experience are validated.”
OSU Medical is also home to Oklahoma’s top ranked Wound Care and Hyperbarics Clinic and was named a 2009 Highest Rated Emergency Department for Patient Satisfaction.
The College of Osteopathic Medicine is one of 44 osteopathic medical schools in the nation.
Two-thirds of the graduates practice in primary care (family practice, pediatrics, internal medicine, and obstetrics and gynecology) and one-third practice in specialty areas such as dermatology, neurology, surgery, obstetrics, gynecology, ophthalmology, psychiatry, anesthesiology and gastroenterology.
So what keeps Bundy-Myers going after nearly three decades in nursing?
“I understand people,” she said. “I understand the stress of working in the medical profession. I think it’s the compassion and the fact that I feel like I’m part of the noblest profession so it carries me through.
“I’m proud to be a nurse.”
Her family has followed in her footstops. One child is an echocardiogram tech. Another is a certified burn nurse. One of her nieces delivers babies.
Bundy-Myers has been accepted into her master’s program. She says eventually she wants to teach.
And she wants to inspire people.
“We need to get more people into nursing,” she said. “We need to go into the high schools. We need to shine different lights on different aspects of nursing and maybe change a stereotype.”


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Ginger Davis (middle) and her family have run Heartland CPR for almost 15 years now.

Heartland CPR delivers for nurses

Fun Fact: When learning CPR, Chuck Norris brought the dummy back to life.
Heartland CPR owner Ginger Davis says the sign in the back of the room at her Northwest Oklahoma City office always draws a laugh.
It’s just one of the ice breakers Davis and her staff use to help medical professionals feel at ease when it comes to renewing certifications that mean the difference between earning a paycheck or sitting at home.
Her son, Devin, says Heartland has a large following of nurses who enjoy the fact the company works around their schedule.
Heartland offers American Heart Association (AHA) certified BLS, ACLS, PALS and Heartsaver CPR, First Aid and AED training in Oklahoma City, Tulsa and throughout the state of Oklahoma.
By limiting class sizes, minimizing test anxiety, and taking every opportunity to exceed the expectations of customers, Heartland CPR engages participants with a fresh approach to training.
It’s why the business has such a huge following in the medical field and a high return rate.
Referral discounts are offered.
Flexibility has always been the cornerstone of Heartland’s business model.
One in-demand course is the S.T.A.T. program which stands for Sequentially Timed Accelerated Training. Nurses can renew the entire BLS, ACLS and PALS certification suite in a weekend.
Despite the demand, classes are limited in size.
It’s a Heartland tenet to ensure the quality of the training and the ability for students to ask questions and truly grasp the material.
Heartland was an early adopter of the new voice mannikin technology as well.
“It’s been a massive improvement as far as the compressions go,” Devin Davis said. “It helps them correct themselves on what they need to improve on. It’s pretty effective to make sure people are getting the correct feedback.”
Ginger Davis counts five firefighters, four paramedics, two first responders to the OKC bombing, an EMS chief and an EMS sergeant among her instructors.
“I think our experience base is pretty impressive,” Davis said. “It’s pretty impressive when you put it all together and look at all the experience combined.”
A minimum class size of six participants applies to all training at customer locations within the OKC metro area; other minimums may be negotiated for customer locations statewide.
Don’t have 6? Then Heartland can combine you or your group with another small class with flexible scheduling.
Emergency & individual classes are available as well.
The company has also expanded into AED equipment sales.
Heartland is now able to equip customers with a variety of quality AEDs from trusted manufacturers at pricing that can’t be touched even by online distributors. Discounts are also offered when you package your AED purchase and training.  Enrollments are limited to assure small classes.


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The Fran and Earl Ziegler College of Nursing at the University of Oklahoma is renowned for producing some of the most well-prepared nurses in the profession.
That reputation continues to be bolstered as several students as well as faculty were recently announced as recipients of competative awards.
The student awards were given at the 13-state region’s Midwest Nursing Research Society’s annual research conference in April.
The theme for the 2018 conference was “The Future of Nursing Research: Economic Realities and Creative Solutions.”
The learner outcomes for the conference were to identify strategies that engage stakeholders to advance nursing research and the preparation of nurse scientists; discuss emerging realities and challenges in nursing research across environments as well as examine creative solutions for sustaining nursing research
Several OU students conducting research excelled at this year’s conference which is the highlight event for the 13-state regional MNRS organization, which is charged with promoting nursing science and supporting the next generation of nurse scientists.
“We have amazing students who are dedicated to the pursuit of research,” said Barbara Holtzclaw, Ph.D., RN, FAAN, associate dean for research at the OU College of Nursing. “Everything that nurses do for patients should have research evidence for it, and our students are being prepared to make a significant difference in their professions.”
Student poster competition winners in the undergraduate category were:
* 1st place winner – Aprill Knox Phillips, May 2018 BSN Graduate – “Effectiveness of Dance on Cognitive Function in Older Adults.” Knox Phillips is also a Geriatric Nursing Emerging Leader Awardee.
* 2nd place winner – Marleigh Feigenbaum, May 2018 BSN Graduate “Effects of Dance Interventions on Improvements in Gait and Balance in Older Adults with Parkinson’s disease: A Review of Literature.” Feigenbaum is another Geriatric Nursing Emerging Leader Awardee.
In the Masters (MS/MSN) category OU winners were:
* 1st place winner – Kali Johnson, May 2018 MSN Graduate. – “Influence of Individualized Exercise Therapy on Quality of Life in Heart Failure.” Johnson is an Office of Research Travel Award Recipient.
* 3rd place winner – Ingrid Dixon, MSN student – “Interpretation of Newborn Communication Cues: An Evidence Based Practice Integrative Review.” Dixon is in her first year as a PhD student.
In the PhD category
* 3rd place winner – Clara Edwards, PhD student – “Care Needs for Persons with Parkinson’s Disease Associated Dysphagia and their Care Partners: State of the Science.” Edwards is a two-time MNRS winner, placing first in last year’s competition.
From the very beginning of their nursing education, OU students are taught the importance of researching and implementing an evidence-based practice.
That mission and vision comes from the very top with Interim Dean Gary L. Loving.
“Two consecutive years our students and faculty have had tremendous success disseminating student research at this national meeting,” Loving said. “Congratulations to all our students who garnered honors at MNRS. I’m very proud of them and of our faculty who have expertly mentored the students in their research.”
In March, the National Association of Clinical Nurse Specialists (NACNS) presented its prestigious Brenda Lyon Leadership Award to Melissa Craft, PhD, APRN-CNS, AOCN, Assistant Professor, Interim Associate Dean for Academic Administration and Graduate Education and PhD Program Director.
The award recognizes extraordinary leadership in service to NACNS.
OU College of Nursing faculty mentors and advisors include: Drs. Carol Rogers, Mark Fisher, Stephanie Marfurt, Karen Rose, Rene Leasure, Barbara Carlson, Janet S. Wilson, and Barbara Holtzclaw.


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Norman Regional Health System’s one-of-a-kind nurse residency program is making it easier for nurses to earn their BSN while still at work.

Norman Regional Health System is committed to growing its new nurses.
And now those nurses can earn their BSN without ever leaving work.
The Health system is accepting applications for its next Nurse Residency Program cohort.
Norman Regional started the program with its first cohort in August 2017, with a group of 24 resident nurses from various areas of the hospital. Another cohort began in April.
Norman Regional is accepting applications through July for the third cohort to begin in August. A fourth cohort will start in late fall.
The Nurse Residency Program is a one-year program that is designed for new registered nurses (RNs) that have graduated from nursing school. It is a Vizient/AACN program meant to help transition the nurses from school to practice.
The mission of the program is, “To facilitate and support the graduate nurse in acquisition and assimilation of knowledge, skills and research during the transition from novice to competent, confident nursing professional.” The vision of the program is, “To produce the next generation of nursing leaders empowered and focused on the delivery of safe patient care.”
Norman Regional is the first hospital system in Oklahoma to offer the Vizient/AACN Nurse Residency curriculum. The health system decided to join the Vizient/AACN™ Nurse Residency Program because it’s an opportunity to make a difference in new nursing careers, said Cassie Chaffin, BSN, RN-CCRN-K, nurse residency coordinator.
Vizient has a national retention rate of 95 percent for first-year nurses, compared to the national average of only 82 percent.
“We’re looking at making sure they’re grounded and feel supported as a professional nurse,” Chaffin said.
Residents of the program are hired by Norman Regional Health System as full-functioning nurses, but they meet with other residents once a month for a four-hour seminar with different topics that are meant to grow them as professional nurses.
There are no limitations on where nurse residents must work within the health system.
Chaffin said that hospitals have begun offering Nurse Residency Programs because the Institute of Medicine made it a Healthy People 2020 goal for hospitals to start offering some type of transition to practice for nurses the way they do for physicians.
“I think it helps the nurses to start thinking wider—not just ‘how is this affecting me or this patient at this particular moment,’ but ‘if I provide this intervention, what is the long-term outcome?’ It helps these nurses with overall critical thinking through patient care. It also has helped them because it gives them a time to come together and discuss, debrief and find support for anything they may be going through on the floor,” Chaffin said.
Danielle Winkle, BSNRN, is an Emergency Department nurse at Norman Regional and a resident of Norman Regional’s first Nurse Residency cohort. She moved here in July from Nebraska after graduating from Clarkson College in April of 2017.
Winkle said things have been going great at Norman Regional and how she has her “dream job.”
“The Nurse Residency Program has given me all-around base knowledge of nursing. We’re always learning something new. It’s helped me tremendously,” Winkle said.
“I’m excited every time I go into work or go into the monthly meeting. I’m excited to absorb any knowledge I can to make me a better nurse.”
The Health System has joined with Kramer School of Nursing at Oklahoma City University to begin offering reduced tuition BSN classes on site.
For questions or interest in the Nurse Residency Program, contact Chaffin at 405-307-3160 or cchaffin@nrh-ok.com or Julia Burleson, BSN, RN, CHCR, professional healthcare recruiter, at 405-307-1554 or jburleson@nrh-ok.com.