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March 2011

Welcome to the March 2011 issue of School of Nursing News, an electronic newsletter designed to inform, engage, inspire, and connect with faculty members, staff, students, alumni, and other constituents of the University of Maryland School of Nursing (UMSON).

UMSON Celebrates Black History Month

UMSON celebrated Black History Month on February 15 with a lecture, “The Contributions of African-American Nurses in the U.S. Public Health Service (USPHS),” presented by RADM Deborah Parham Hopson, PhD, RN, FAAN, associate administrator, HIV/AIDS Bureau, Health Resources and Services Administration. RADM Parham Hopson spoke about USPHS’ mission, the contributions of nurses to USPHS, and how she rose through the ranks to become the first African-American Rear Admiral in USPHS.

RADM Parham Hopson

Advocacy Day in Annapolis a Huge Success

Approximately 50 UMSON faculty, staff, and students traveled to Annapolis on Feb. 23 to meet with legislators and encourage them to support funding for Loan Assistance Repayment Programs and to continue to support the Governor’s budget request for the University of Maryland, Baltimore. Legislators were reminded that UMSON provides more than 40 percent of Maryland’s professional nurse workforce and contributes health care services for underserved communities valued at $5 million annually. They were also informed of the important role of nurse practitioners (NPs) and that NPs want to collaborate with other health care professionals to meet the growing health care needs and demands of Marylanders.

Nurse legislators Addie Eckardt and Shirley Nathan-Pulliam meet UMSON students.

Faculty & Staff Appointments

Susan Braid, DrPH, MPH, MSN, RN, has joined the Department of Family and Community Health as an assistant professor.  She holds a DrPH from the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, an MPH from Columbia University, an MSN from the University of Pennsylvania, and a BS from Boston College.  Dr. Braid most recently worked as a neonatal nurse practitioner at the University of California San Diego Medical Center and also served as an assistant professor at San Diego State University.

Ameera Chakravarthy, MS, BSN ’02, APRN, has joined the Department of Organizational Systems and Adult Health as a clinical instructor. She has more than eight years experience in adult health/acute care nursing. Ms. Chakravarthy holds an MS (FNP) and a post-master’s certificate (ACNP) from the University of Pennsylvania School of Nursing and a BSN from the University of Maryland School of Nursing.

Faculty & Staff Kudos

Janet D. Allan, PhD, RN, FAAN, dean and professor, was recently re-elected to a two-year term as treasurer of the American Association of Colleges of Nursing’s (AACN) Board of Directors. Each member of the 11-person governing board represents an AACN member institution.

Kathleen Buckley, PhD, RN, IBCLC, associate professor, co-authored the following publication:

Agazio, J.G., & Buckley, K.M. (2010). Finding a balance: Health promotion challenges of military women. Health Care for Women International, 31(9), 848-868.

Marian Grant, DNP, RN, CRNP, assistant professor, received $50,000 in funding from the Skip Viragh Center for Pancreas Cancer Center at Johns Hopkins Medicine to continue her DNP capstone project/study for one year. The project included Grant’s own page on the Hopkins Pancreatic Cancer Center website where she publically answered questions about palliative care issues. More information can be found at:

Karen Johnson PhD, RN, associate professor, UMSON, and director of nursing research, University of Maryland Medical Center (UMMC); Jamie Tumulty MS ’02, BSN ’95, CRNP-AC, clinical nurse specialist, Pediatric ICU, UMMC; and Paul Thurman MS ‘07, ACNPC, CCNS, CCRN, CNRN, clinical nurse specialist, R Adams Cowley Shock Trauma Center, UMMC, received the American Association of Critical Care Nurses-Phillips Medical Systems Clinical Outcomes Grant in the amount of $10,000 for their proposal, "Alarm Identification and Response Simulation: An Educational Program to Sensitize Inexperienced ICU Nurses to Correctly Identify and Appropriately Respond to Alarms.”

Deborah McGuire, PhD, RN, FAAN, professor, recently attended the first meeting of the ad hoc Evaluation Advisory Committee, which is part of a National Institutes of Health evaluation project, “End-of-Life and Palliative Care Science: A Needs Assessment of Federal and Private Research Funding Trends, Project Grants, and National Research Priorities.” Dr. McGuire is one of only two nurses nominated to serve on this national committee.

Deborah McGuire, PhD, RN, FAAN, professor, co-authored the following publication:

McGuire, D.B., Reifsnyder, J., Soeken, K., Kaiser, K.S., & Yeager, K.A. (2011).  Assessing pain in non-responsive hospice patients: Development and preliminary testing of the Multidimensional Objective Pain Assessment Tool (MOPAT). Journal of Palliative Medicine, 14(3): 287-292.

Deborah McGuire, PhD, RN, FAAN, co-presented the following research poster: McGuire, D.B., Kaiser, K.S., Soeken, K., Reifsnyder, J., & Keay, T. Measuring pain in non-communicative palliative care patients in the acute care setting: Psychometric evaluation of the Multidimensional Objective Pain Assessment Tool (MOPAT), at the American Academy of Hospice and Palliative Medicine/Hospice and Palliative Nurses Association Annual Assembly in Vancouver, BC, Canada, Feb 16-19.  The poster won a blue ribbon as one of the best posters at the annual assembly. In addition, the abstract from this poster has been published:

McGuire, D.B., Kaiser, K., Soeken, K., Reifsnyder, J., & Keay, T.  (2011). Measuring pain in noncommunicative palliative care patients in the acute care setting: Psychometric evaluation of the Multidimensional Objectives Pain Assessment Tool (MOPAT). Journal of Pain and Symptom Management, 41, 299-300.

Deborah McGuire, PhD, RN, FAAN, presented a poster at the Oncology Nursing Society’s 11th National Cancer Research Conference, held Feb. 10-12 in Los Angeles. In addition to Dr. McGuire, four other UMSON faculty/staff co-authored the poster. Kathleen Griffith, PhD, AOCN, CRNP, assistant professor; Abby Plusen, MSW, program manager; Sandra McLeskey, PhD, RN, professor; and Nina Trocky, DNP, RN, associate professor.

McGuire, D.B., Griffith, K., Plusen, A., McLeskey, S.W., & Trocky, N. Leveraging an academic-private foundation educational partnership grant to support research development in a school of nursing, Oncology Nursing Society, 11th National Cancer Nursing Research Conference, Los Angeles, Calif., Feb. 10-12.

The abstract from this poster has been published online: McGuire, D.B., Griffith, K., Plusen, A., McLeskey, S.W., & Trocky, N. (2011). Oncology Nursing Forum, 38, A86 (

Mary Etta Mills, ScD, RN, CNAA, FAAN, professor, co-authored the following publication:

Lee, T.T.; Liu, C.Y.; Kuo, Y.; Mills, M.E.; Fong, J. & Hung, C. (2011). Application of data mining to the identification of critical factors in patient falls using a web-based reporting system. International Journal of Medical Informatics. 80 (2), 141-150.

Patricia Morton, PhD, RN, CRNP, FAAN, professor and associate dean for academic affairs, served on the planning committee for the Faculty Development Conference 2011: Success Strategies for New Faculty, held Feb. 11-13 in Austin, Texas. She also presented a workshop, “Publishing as Scholarship,” at the conference, which was sponsored by the American Association of Colleges of Nursing.

Barbara Sattler, DrPH, RN, FAAN, professor, received a $50,000 grant from the Bauman Fund to help teach nurses about the relationship between chemical policies and human health. Nurses will learn about the inadequacies of product labeling and the deficits in the public’s right to know about health threats associated with air, water, food, and product contamination. They will also learn about safer alternatives, model state and federal policies, and the best way to deliver their message when educating the public and policymakers. 

Nancy Staggers, PhD, RN, professor, authored or co-authored the following publications:

National whitepaper on usability, "Promoting Usability in Healthcare Organizations: Initial Steps and Progress Toward a Usability Maturity Model." Co-leads: Nancy Staggers and Melanie Rodney. Usability Taskforce, Health Information Management and Systems Society. (

Madison, M., & Staggers, N. (2011). Electronic health records and the regulatory implications on nursing practice. Journal of Nursing Regulation, 1(4), 54-60.         

Staggers, N. (2010). The rapidly emerging national interest in HIT usability. Senior Editor Column: Crucial Conversations about Optimal Design. Online Journal of Nursing Informatics, 14(3). (

Staggers, N. & Troseth, M. (2011). Usability and Application Design Collaborative Summary and Recommendations. In M. Ball, J. Douglas (Eds.), Technology Informatics Guiding Educational Reform (ch. 14). New York: Springer.

Student News

PhD candidate Myra Woolery received a one-year (Jan. 1-Dec. 31, 2011) national peer-reviewed research grant in the amount of $10,000 from the Oncology Nursing Society Foundation’s Small Grants Program. The grant, “Psychometric Evaluation of the Pediatric Constipation Assessment Scale,” represents Woolery’s doctoral dissertation study.  She was one of five applicants funded from a pool of more than 30 applicants.

A group of UMSON students from the Universities at Shady Grove and their clinical instructor Janey Roth, MPH, CNM, RN, participated in the second annual Love Your Heart Expo held Feb. 12 at White Flint Mall in Bethesda. The students provided health screenings for expo attendees.

USG Students Attend Heart Expo

Alumni News & Notes

Looking for a Unique Gift? Consider an Auditorium Seat!

Consider naming a UMSON auditorium seat in honor of, or in memory of, a friend, family member, faculty member, or classmate – or place your own name on it! Special prices, available now until June 30, 2011, are $250 for each seat or $450 for two. Prices will increase to $350 per seat or $600 for two on July 1, 2011. The cost includes a plaque inscribed with the name of your choice that will be affixed to the arm of the chair(s). Please consider this meaningful way to pay homage to a significant person in your life. Contact Stacey Conrad in the Office of Development and Alumni Relations at 410-706-7640 or for more information.

Help Make Your “Alumni Today” Directory the Best Ever!

UMSON alumni can be found across the nation and around the world. But no matter where their lives have led them, our alumni share a common bond. That’s why the UMB Foundation, Inc. has contracted Harris Connect, the largest alumni publication company in the U.S., to create Alumni Today, a new publication designed to help keep our alumni connected.  

Harris Connect will produce a beautiful hardcover publication with up-to-date contact information so alumni can reconnect for personal and professional networking. The publication will include comprehensive biographical listings with contact information, career overviews, and personal highlights of UMSON graduates.

To assure that our Alumni Today directory is as current as possible, Harris Connect has begun contacting UMSON alumni to verify and update contact and career information. With your participation, our 2011 Alumni Today is sure to be a great success.  For more information, call 410-706-0674 or send an e-mail to

Upcoming Alumni Events

Reunion 2011

The 2011 Alumni Reunion, being held Saturday, April 30, will honor undergraduate classes ending in “6” or “1.” Come to Baltimore to reconnect with classmates and renew your pride in UMSON!  Watch the mail for your invitation. If you would like to volunteer as a Class Representative, contact Cynthia Sikorski, associate director of alumni relations, 410-706-0674, or

Trauma, Critical Care, and Emergency Nursing Dinner

Join Patricia Morton, PhD ’89, MS ‘79, RN, FAAN, associate dean for student and academic affairs, and UMSON Trauma, Critical Care, and Emergency Nursing (TCCEN) faculty members, alumni, students, and friends for a TCCEN alumni dinner and informal reunion Sunday, May 1, at Gioco Restaurant, 1312 S. Wabash, Chicago, IL. The event is being held in conjunction with the AACN National Teaching Institute Conference. Watch the mail for your invitation. For questions or additional information, contact Cynthia Sikorski, associate director of alumni relations, 410-706-0674, or  

Denver Alumni Event Scheduled for June

Attention Colorado alumni! Join Dean Janet Allan and Laurette Hankins, associate dean for development and alumni relations, for an alumni networking event in Denver on Thursday, June 23. More details are forthcoming.  For questions or additional information, contact Cynthia Sikorski, associate director of alumni relations, 410-706-0674, or

Mark Your Calendar!

Research Seminar, “Yale FIT: An Exercise Intervention RCT for Women With Cancer,” presented by Tish Knobf, PhD, RN, FAAN, AOCN, professor, Adult Advanced Practice program, Yale University School of Nursing and Komen Visiting Professor, UMSON – March 7 – UMSON Room 730 – noon to 1 p.m.  Free admission. RSVP to or 410-706-2619. If you would like to schedule a presentation by Dr. Knobf for your class or community group, please e-mail Abby Plusen at

Ann Ottney Cain Endowed Lecture, “Healing Couples’ Relationships in the Shadow of Trauma”Tuesday, March 29, UMSON. Free admission. For more information, visit or call 410-706-3767.

“Nursing Practice Based on Evidence: The Emerging Impact of Health Care Reform”Thursday, March 31 and Friday, April 1. For more information, visit or call 410-706-3767.

Entry Into Practice Spring Open House – Saturday, April 2 – 9:30 a.m. – Free admission. RSVP to: or call 410-706-0501. For more information, visit

Komen Distinguished Lecture, “Breast Cancer Survivorship: Defining a New Normal”Thursday, April 14, UMSON. Free admission. For more information, visit or call 410-706-3767.

Pi Chapter, Sigma Theta Tau presents, “Practical Approaches to Translating Evidence at the Point of Care,”Thursday, April 28, Free admission. For more information visit, or call 410-706-3767. 

In the News

Subject: How to Avoid Ethics Consultation Pitfalls
Source: Medical Ethics Advisor - March 1
Summary: Clinical ethics consultations still are infrequent in most hospitals, but their use is beginning to enter ethics board conversations, and it's an area that should be approached with cautious preparation, an expert says. "If it's done correctly, [clinical ethics consultations are] valuable to people who ask for the help," says Anita Tarzian, PhD, RN, an ethics and research consultant. Tarzian is the program coordinator for the Maryland Health Care Ethics Committee Network, School of Law, and an associate professor at the School of Nursing.

Subject: Nursing Shortage Remedy in Maryland
Source: Baltimore Business Journal - Feb. 18
Summary: Jesse Kendall was able to enter the School of Nursing thanks in part to a $10,000 grant from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. Dean Janet D. Allan, PhD, RN, FAAN, is quoted in this article.

Subject: Mental Health of Obese Children Is Primary Concern, Nursing Researcher Says
Source: Life Media - Feb. 16; Medical News Today - Feb. 16; dlife - Feb. 16
Summary: The mental health of obese children should be a primary focus of researchers studying childhood obesity, according to Christine Calamaro, PhD, CRNP, assistant professor at the School of Nursing.

Subject: Study Suggests Link Between Lengthy Nurse Shifts and Patient Deaths
Source:  Prince George's Post - Feb. 14
Summary: The demanding work schedules of registered nurses may be to blame for patient mortality, says a recent study at the School of Nursing and the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. Long work hours and insufficient time away from the job were the strongest contributors to patient deaths, said Alison Trinkoff, ScD, MPH, RN, FAAN, professor at the nursing school. These factors can cause sleep deprivation and fatigue in nurses, who are then at a higher risk for making errors at work.

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