James Madison University

Nursing Newsletter for Alumni and Friends

Nov/Dec 2015

Holiday Greetings from the Department Head

Julie Sanford, DNS, RNJMU Nursing has several exciting news items to share as we move forward and into the New Year! In September of 2014, we submitted a proposal to the University and ultimately the State Council of Higher Education for Virginia (SCHEV) to be designated as a School of Nursing. We received notice that our request was supported and as of January 1, 2016 we will be known as the “School of Nursing.” We will remain in the College of Health and Behavioral Studies. We are thrilled with our designation as a school and the message of quality education that the name conveys.

I am happy to share that our Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) accreditation DNP site visit went well in November. The CCNE team report indicates that our DNP program meets or exceeds all standards and key elements needed to attain full accreditation.  The Accreditation Review Committee and Board of Directors will make the final accreditation decision at their Spring 2016 meeting.  We are excited that all programs in nursing will be accredited by CCNE. The DNP program has had a successful start and continues to grow in popularity. We are looking forward to welcoming our third Cohort of DNP students in January, 2016.

Lastly Nursing is scheduled to move into a beautiful new building along with our colleagues in Communication Sciences and Disorders, Health Sciences, Social Work and the Dean’s office of the College of Health and Behavioral Studies after the May 2016 Graduation. The space will consist of state of the art labs, equipment, offices and classrooms. Check out sites.jmu.edu/chbsbuilding for the full story and pictures of the new site.

Once again I want to thank our alumni for sharing their stories! We love hearing about how you got your start at JMU and the positive impact you’ve made in healthcare and in your patient’s lives both at home and abroad.

Wishing you all a joyous and safe holiday season.

Julie Sanford, DNS, RN
Professor and Head of Nursing
AlumNews

Theres Rodzevik

Theresa Rodzevik (2004), "JMU Nursing and ROTC prepared me well for a career as a nurse leader."

During her time at JMU Terri joined the Army National Guard and served as a medic in the Simultaneous Membership Program (SMP) while she was in ROTC. Immediately after graduating from these programs she was prepared both technically and mentally to be part of a team consisting of Army officers and enlisted soldiers in a field and training environment. Terri was deployed to Tikrit, Iraq, as an emergency, trauma and flight nurse, in less than one year from the beginning of her first active duty nursing assignment in the Army. "This provided me with the most amazing experiences as I lived every day with the greatest purpose of saving the lives of American soldiers."

Terri expresses gratitude for having great instructors at JMU. "In ROTC, I will always reflect on the guidance provided by Lieutenant Colonel Swayne and Major Browning. She reflects that Lt. Colonel Swayne always encouraged her to speak up, "I did, but not with a loud voice, and I learned to become a strong advocate for my patients." She was also influenced by Dr. Linda Hulton who always impressed Terri with her love of public health.

Terri is currently a Lieutenant Commander, nurse practitioner (MSN from GWU) working in the ER for the Indian Health Service in Phoenix, Arizona. "I have had many great experiences treating special populations." She has been deployed twice to Iraq and has worked on some of the most remote Indian Reservations providing health care to our medically under-served population of Native Americans. She is continuing her education at this time by working towards her DNP.

Terri's professional goal for the future is to create and implement policy under the Affordable Care Act that provides improved access to health care for Native Americans. Personally she is an elite triathlete and just finished 3rd in her age group at Ironman Arizona. She is hoping to qualify for the Ironman World Championships in Kona, Hawaii in 2016.

When asked what advice she would give new nurses, Terri says; "Always trust your instincts. It is an intangible quality that you will learn when performing patient care. If something about a situation feels wrong, it usually is and you need to investigate further. Your patient will thank you!"

Terri's professional goal for the future is to create and implement policy under the Affordable Care Act that provides improved access to health care for Native Americans. Personally she is an elite triathlete and just finished 3rd in her age group at Ironman Arizona. She is hoping to qualify for the Ironman World Championships in Kona, Hawaii in 2016.

When asked what advice she would give new nurses, Terri says; "Always trust your instincts. It is an intangible quality that you will learn when performing patient care. If something about a situation feels wrong, it usually is and you need to investigate further. Your patient will thank you!"


Paula (Reiss) Sherwood

1990 Grad Paula (Reiss) Sherwood, RN, PhD, CNRN, FAAN

Twenty five years ago JMU Nursing was a much smaller program than it is today. Paula remembers having a very small classes (10-15 students) and getting very personalized attention. She says, "The professors got to know us as people not just students." Paula recalls implementing the first AIDS education program in the county while in her community course. "We were then exposed to all the political and social steps you have to go through in order to implement a program like this and who has to approve, which was very educational."

Paula began her career in Honolulu as a floor nurse on a neuroscience floor. After spending two years there, working evenings and enjoying the beautiful beaches during the day, she moved to Iowa City, Iowa to be closer to grandparents. She worked on a neurosurgery floor and a year and a half later enrolled in the University of Iowa School of Nursing where she obtained her MSN in Adult Clinical Practice while continuing to work full-time. From there she was recruited to be a Neurosurgery CNS in Flint, Michigan where she worked with three neurosurgeons and made rounds on the inpatient ICU and acute care units, did patient and staff education, and saw patients in the out patient clinic.

Deciding to continue with her education once again, Paula left her job to pursue a PhD in nursing at Michigan State University and was in the first class of their doctoral program. "I had the fortune of working with two world class oncology researchers (Drs. Barbara and Charles Given) and focused my research on the psychological distress suffered by family members of persons with primary malignant brain tumors," Paula writes.

Experiences and education has led Paula to where she is today. She states, "I wanted to look at both physiological as well as psychological stress that family caregivers went through so I completed a post -doctoral fellowship at the University of Pittsburgh, and took a faculty position there. She is currently a Professor at the University of Pittsburgh with her specialty being nursing research in the area of family caregiving.

When asked what nursing has meant to her over the years Paula talks about flexibility and opportunity. She tells us, "My work has taken me all over the world, I've completed a Fulbright Scholarship in Finland, presented in England, France, Italy, and Amsterdam, and had the opportunity to conduct research in several countries in Africa."

Paula is married and has two children, ages 14 and 9.


Carl Sanders

Carl Sanders, MSN, FNP-C, 2015, Making An Impact In Guatemala

After graduation Carl decided to embark on a clinical mission trip. He is partnered with World Help, a Christian based organization that assists established organizations with their mission. He joined with three other providers from the U.S. and Canada to provide medical help to villages in Guatemala, which is one of the most impoverished countries in the world. They have treated over 642 patients for illness ranging form headaches to severe malnutrition and acute Dengue infections. Most of the clinics were set up in the village school or church but one afternoon Carl and a physician from Arlington, a translator and two helpers walked to a local village and went door to door offering medical assistance. "We found some of the sickest patients in the villages who otherwise would not have made the hike to the sites where the medical clinics were set up," says, Carl.

One of Carl's goals for the future includes providing medical care for these impoverished villages on foot just like he did that one afternoon. He states, "We could experience and witness the real circumstances that these people face on a daily basis".

As for his time at JMU; He recalls, "it was great. I met some amazing , energetic , and caring professors along with many great nurse practitioner students. I can only say that at JMU I always felt like I had genuine support."

Faculty and Students, Awards and Recognitions


Talia Startsman
 

Talia Startsman

Talia received the Virginia March of Dimes Nursing Student of the Year Award. She is Vice president of the NSA, a Student Leader in Pi Mu, and serves on the Nursing Student Advisory Council. Talia is in her third semester and will graduate in My 2016.

Chris Faschin-Maphis

 

Chris Fasching-Maphis, MSN, RN-BC, FNP-BC

Instructor Chris Fasching-Maphis received the Virginia March of Dimes Behavioral Health Nurse of the Year Award.

Erika Metzler-Sawin

 

Dr. Erika Metzler-Sawin, PhD, RN

Associate Professor Metzler-Sawin was awarded the Virginia March of Dimes Nurse Educator of the Year Award

 

Julie Sanford, DNS, RN

Department Head and Professor Dr. Julie Sanford was the recipient of the Virginia March of Dimes Executive Nurse Leadership Award.

Maria deValpine

 

Maria deValpine, PhD, RN, MSN

Professor deValpine was awarded the Public Health Nurse Creative Achievement Award from APHA (American Public Health Association). It is bestowed in recognition of an individual's exceptional and creative contribution to public health nursing administration, education, practice, or research.

Erica Lewis

 

 Erica Lewis, PhD, RN

Associate Professor, Dr. Erica Lewis, with her award for being chosen by the VNA as being one of the top 40 under the age of 40 nurses in the Commonwealth.

Christina Lam

 

Christina Lam, MSN, RN

BSN Program Coordinator, Christina Lam, was awarded a Jonas Nurse Leader Fellowship through the Jonas Center and the American Association of Colleges of Nursing. The fellowship is awarded to emerging nurse leaders pursuing doctoral degrees.

Congratulations to Melissa Leisen, MSN, RN, Julie Strunk, PhD, RN, Debbie Gleason, PhD, RN, and Nancy Puffenbarger, MSN, RN, for their poster presentation which took 1st place at the Engagement Scholarship Consortium at Penn State in the category "Ways to Advance Rigor or Elevate Impact."

 To update and share your information email Michele dombrome@jmu.edu

nursingdept@jmu.edu | (540)568-6314


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