I began my nursing education with a BS degree in Nursing from Vanderbilt University, and then earned an M.S.N. degree from Vanderbilt with a clinical specialization in the family nurse practitioner (FNP) program. I have been a nurse practitioner in Nashville for more than 25 years and, even after all that time, I find it to be an exciting, rewarding, and constantly challenging role. I earned a Ph.D. in Nursing from the University of Kentucky and joined Belmont's School of Nursing faculty in 1994, when the first M.S.N. students were admitted.
I teach the graduate courses in pharmacology and primary health care as well as the intensive practicum course in the final clinical semester. I thoroughly enjoy my part in guiding the graduate nursing students through their courses as they gradually learn the skills of advanced practice nursing. My goal for our master's students is excellent holistic clinical practice that is solidly based on research. In addition to my teaching and administrative responsibilities, I practice one day a week as a nurse practitioner with Belmont's Student Health Services.
My research interests include patient understandings of chronic illnesses and how those understandings affect patients' willingness to make the therapeutic changes we prescribe. In addition, I am interested in nurturing the habit of self-reflection and analysis of clinical practice in our master's students as part of life-long learning. I have presented these topics at several professional meetings, including the National Organization of Nurse Practitioner Faculties.
I believe that nursing is an excellent career choice today. Patients need the expertise and advocacy of nurses more than ever as the health care system goes through dramatic changes. If you would like to discuss Belmont's FNP program, my phone number is 615/460-6027. Leave a short message and a number where I can reach you and I will gladly return your call. Thank you for considering Belmont University School of Nursing.