2022 Award Winners

BSN Class of 2022 Award Winners

BSN students chosen by faculty members for their clinical skill, leadership, and academic strength

  • Zahra Alisa
    The nursing student who contributed the most to the School of Nursing
  • Raniyah Majied
    The nursing student who contributed the most to the University
  • Sarah D'Esopo
    The 2022 Hemmings Clinical Excellence Award winner
  • Emma Hearington
    The 2022 Z Society Edgar Shannon Award for Academic Excellence winner
  • Tuyet Chuong
    The Virginia Nurses Association Leader award
  • Lisa Webster
    The Susan Hutchinson Memorial Award winner

CNL Class of 2022 Award Winners

Clinical Nurse Leader students chosen by their faculty for their clinical skills, academic prowess, and leadership skills

  • Amber Campos
    the Beta Kappa Nan Hilt Excellence in Practice Award
  • Heather Cantwell
    the Clinical Nurse Leader Capstone Award 
  • Aradhana Khubani
    the Clinical Nurse Leader Clinical Excellence Award

MSN, PhD, and DNP Class of 2022 Award Winners

Graduate students chosen by their faculty mentors for their academic skill, their clinical dedication, and for the power and strength of their scholarly pursuits

  • Laura Biazon (DNP `22)
    the Outstanding DNP Scholarly Practice Project Award
  • Charemon E. Brooks (PHD `22)
    the Barbara Brodie Scholars Award
  • Elizabeth Kassulke (DNP `22)
    the Outstanding DNP Mentorship award
  • K. Jane Muir (PHD `21)
    the Verhonic Dissertation Award
    the Beta Kappa President's Scholarship
  • Susanna Pruangkarn (DnP `22)
    the Outstanding DNP Mentorship award
  • Jaclyn Turet (MSN `21)
    the Barbara Brodie Scholars Award

Presenting the Nurses of the Class of 2022

PhD in Nursing Dissertations

Closely guided by their faculty mentors, PhD in nursing students spend years doing a deep dive into original research topics before presenting their final projects to a committee. The following individuals successfully created, completed, and defended their dissertations:

  • Veronica Bernacchi, PhD `22
    Exploring rural resilience through cultural and geospatial contexts
    (mentored by Drs. Pam DeGuzman, Virginia LeBaron, Jamie Zoellner, and Kathleen Porter)

  • Charemon Brooks, PhD `22
    Educating the Black professional nurse in Virginia: Race, place, and politics, 1891-1939
    (mentored by Drs. Barbra Wall, Arlene Keeling, Cathy Campbell, and Kwame Out)

  • Sherry Kausch, PhD `21
    Analytical approaches to quantify illness severity
    (mentored by Drs. Jessica Keim-Malpass, Randall Moorman, Jennifer Lobo, and Brynne Sullivan)

  • K. Jane Muir, PhD `21
    Exploring the direct and indirect costs of nurse burnout for a healthcare organization
    (mentored by Drs. Jessica Keim-Malpass, Virginia LeBaron, Tanya Wanchek, and Jennifer Lobo)

  • Marie Statler, PhD `21
    The impact of racial concordance on African American participation in nursing research: A qualitative descriptive study
    (mentored by Drs. Susan Kools, Barbra Wall, Randy Jones, and Jeanita Richardson)

  • Victoria Tucker, PhD `22
    Moving lines: Position, power and identity; Black nurses in Virginia, 1950s-1980
    (mentored by Drs. Barbra Wall, Derrick Aldridge, Debra Barksdale, Susan Kools, and Talitha LeFlouria)
Doctor of Nursing Practice Scholarly Practice Projects

With the guidance of their advisers and clinical mentors, Doctor of Nursing Practice students identify a clinical problem, gather existing research on it, pursue their own avenues of study, and present their findings and the clinical implications. The following DNP students successfully presented and defended their scholarly practice projects:

  • Laura Biazon, DNP `22 - Integration of early introduction guidelines for the primary prevention of food allergies into infant well child checks within a pediatric primary care setting (mentored by Drs. Terri Yost and Emma Mitchell)

  • Steve Fetcho, DNP `21 - Educating primary care providers on the evidence supporting the use of yoga in treating anxiety, depression and lower back pain (mentored by Drs. Kathryn Reid, Gina DeGennaro, and Beth Quatrara)

  • Mary Lacy Grecco, DNP `21, MSN `21 - The effect of simulated communication training on self-efficacy and frequency of discussions in oncology nurses conducting advance directive discussions with patients on clinical trials (mentored by Drs. Regina DeGennaro and Clareen Wiencek)

  • Sarah Hogan, DNP `22 - A systematic evaluation of an accreditation readiness program at an academic medical center (mentored by Drs. Clareen Wiencek, Richard Westphal, and Ivora Hinton, and Denise Barth)

  • Elizabeth Kassulke, DNP `22 - Program evaluation: Clinical nurse specialist-led program for diabetes health (mentored by Drs. Beth Quatrara, Gina DeGennaro, and Linda Thurby-Hay)

  • Allison Kirkner, DNP `22 - Program evaluation of a critical care advanced practice provider fellowship (mentored by Dr. Clareen Wiencek, Dr. Elizabeth Hundt, and Michelle Dawson)

  • Carl Lambert, DNP `22 - The impact of simulation-based training on the self-confidence of new nurses in the care of acutely deteriorating patients and the activation of the rapid response team (mentored by Drs. Clareen Wiencek and Beth Quatrara, and Jill Francis-Parr)

  • Morgan McDowell, DNP `22 - Promoting antibiotic stewardship for UTIs in skilled nursing facilities (mentored by Drs. Kathryn Reid, Meghan Mattos, and Vicki McLean)  

  • Shaune McKinnon, DNP `22 - Program evaluation of the therapeutic community in the correctional setting (mentored by Drs. Richard Westphal and Edie Barbero)

  • Kristine O’Keefe-Young, DNP `22 – A program evaluation of a cystic fibrosis transition program at an academic medical center (mentored by Drs. Gina DeGennaro and Beth Quatrara, and Kristi Gott)

  • Wendy Old, DNP `22 - The effect of team resilient actions on compassion satisfactions scores in a primary care practice (mentored by Drs. Elizabeth Friberg, Steven Pearman, and Richard Ridge)

  • Susanna Pruangkarn, DNP `22 - Intimate partner violence assessment program evaluation (mentored by Drs. Clareen Wiencek and Richard Westphal)

  • Lorie Shora, DNP `22 - Addressing geographic disparities in mental health research participation: A process improvement project (mentored by Drs. Elizabeth Friberg and Gina DeGennaro)

  • Habibah Williams, DNP `22 - Evaluation of a pilot program to increase healthcare professionals' awareness of the effects of weight bias (mentored by Drs. Elizabeth Hundt, Beth Quatrara, and Cynthia Ellison)
Clinical Nurse Leader Capstone projects
  • Improving burden assessment of care partners
    by Dianna Gibson, Lucy Gordon, Julie Ortega, Kaylah Navone, and Emese Schafft
  • Visual management boards for staff engagement in quality and safety
    by Amber Campos, Ricki Parham-Johnson, and Hardwynn Tunacao
  • Patient education discharge checklist to facilitate bed availability for L&D transfers to mother-baby
    by Sabrina Martinez, Kiki Suphal, Ellie Sechler, Marybeth Hogeboom, and Meredith Chapman
  • Development of a throughput improvement tool with sexual assault patients in emergency departments
    by Amelia Kirby
  • Prevention of central line-associated bloodstream infections on a stem cell transplant unit
    by Heather Cantwell
  • Improving oral care adherence of prolonged, mechanically-ventilated patients in an adult cardiovascular ICU
    by Susie Kile, Hannah Kirkland, Jamie Nagy, and Michelle Roos
  • Reducing falls by improving call bell communication
    by Mousumi Franks
  • Yoga for anxiety: Inpatient psychiatry
    by Daniel Esquivel
  • Implementation of the high flow holiday weaning protocol in pediatric bronchiolitis patients
    by Ally Dimatulac, Pat Argue, and Aradhana Khubani
  • Leaving the nest: Improving nursing knowledge of developmentally supportive positioning
    by Ally Lane, Rich Kinsley, Kelsey MacPherson, and Casey Ackerman
  • Using the NURSE mnemonic to guide goals of care conversations in the critical care setting: An educational intervention
    by Katie Bergamesca, Emma Colavincenzo, and Anna Woepke
  • Unit acuity scales for staffing decisions in the SICU
    by Dominic Fusanotti and Jaimi Cannata
  • Implementation of a turning device for pressure injury prevention on an adult medical intensive care unit
    by Roman Abdul Satar, Julie Brylawski, Erik Hancock, Candace Ransom, and Ellie Richardson
  • Adapting a sedation weaning guideline on a surgical trauma ICU
    by Megan Carpenter and Devan Kaufman
  • Educating nursing students in palliative care
    by Bonnie-Rebecca Stewart
  • Artificial airway discharge teaching bedside checklist
    by Aundrea Rainwater
  • Reducing supply seek and find time in the ED
    by Julie Land
  • Improving compliance with the check-out process in the outpatient surgery center (OPSC) operating room (OR)
    by Tamara Gordon
  • Use of dietary badge cards to improve nursing knowledge regarding transplant diets
    by Christopher Brodnik, Grace Tavakkol, and Elizabeth Vincent
  • The impact of skin-to-skin contact on the process of neonatal vital sign collection
    by Jaliah Richardson and Sasha Strakhova
  • Educational intervention to promote music therapy in the PACU
    by Janie Raven, Cullen Williams, Forrest Lloyd, and Mavis Kumi
BSN Distinguished Majors Projects

BSN students who complete Distinguished Majors Projects - work that is over and above what is required to graduate and outside the traditional BSN curriculum - spend the final year of their nursing program investigating a topic of their choice under the guidance of a faculty mentor. The following students, some of whom will publish their findings in academic journals, proposed, tested, and presented their findings to the School community, and graduate as our 2022 Distinguished Majors:

  • Abigail Molina-Calderon    
    Perceived level of burden and sense of wellbeing among caregivers of patients receiving in-center hemodialysis

  • Emily McClung    
    Exploring the perceptions and experiences of neonatal intensive care nurses working during the COVID-19 pandemic

  • Tuyet Choung    
    Describing feeding outcomes in infants with hypoplastic left heart syndrome

  • Emma Hearington    
    Nurse perception of the impact of play on post-operative pediatric pain

  • Claire Obeck    
    Pediatric autoimmune neuropsychiatric disorder associated with streptococcal infection: Assessing caregiver experience

  • Mary-Emily Williams    
    Exploring the relationship between pre-stroke physical activity and post-stroke functional independence

  • Carleigh Schafer    
    Access to emergency contraception pills at the University of Virginia

  • Cannon Robinson    
    Multimodal approach to central line education in adult oncology

  • Luis Lorenzo    
    What coping strategies did UVA undergraduates use during the COVID-19 pandemic?

  • Rollins Terry    
    Exploring differences in maternal birth satisfaction before and during the COVID-19 pandemic

  • Nell Fountain    
    The role probiotics can play in combatting stress

  • Joria Le    
    Etiologies of chronic cough from infancy to late adolescence

  • Lindsay Shaw    
    Impact of chronic illness on social connectedness in the adolescent young adult solid organ transplant recipient

  • Anna Dunchus    
    Analyzing the caregiver perspective on transfer of care for adolescents with congenital heart disease

  • Alyssa Gail Valencia    
    Effect of family-centered care in pediatric sepsis trials

Meet our Class of 2022 nurses

BSN student Liza Foxx a student researcher with Prof. Maureen Metzger

When Undergrads Do Research

UVA nurse scientists have a history of taking nursing undergraduates under their wings. For students like Liza Foxx (BSN `22), the experience can be transformative.

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A sticker that community health students marked to celebrate administering their first doses of the COVID19 vaccine to community members,

'Big Shots": Meet Our Student Vaccinators

How Catherine Denton (BSN `22) and her peers learned to become COVID-19 vaccinators in spring 2021.

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Class of 2022: Ali Kyle

Kyle became an EMT at 16, a firefighter at 19, and, after graduating, becomes a U.S. Air Force nurse.

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An image of nurse practitioner and DNP student Shaune McKinnon, director of mental health services at ARCJ

[VIDEO] Class of 2022: Shaune McKinnon

Psychiatric-mental health nurse practitioner McKinnon (DNP `22), who directs mental health at the Albemarle-Charlottesville Regional Jail, supports more than 400 inmates and has seen her work expand since COVID.

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BSN student Madi Wilson and mom Rachelle Aurand, who gave birth to baby Brielle last Feb

Class of 2022: Madi Wilson

Determined to see her patient through, nursing student Madi Wilson (BSN `22) helped new mom Rachelle Aurand, a counselor from Louisa, Va., through a difficult, 12-hour labor, and the birth of her daughter Brielle.

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Heather Cowan, UVA Nursing grad student and volunteer vaccinator

'Keep on Vaxxing'

It's not just shots in arms. It's education. Counseling. A willing ear. And UVA Nursing students like Heather Cowan and Christine Owen (both MSN `22) as well as nursing faculty are there on the frontlines.

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BSN 22 Raniyah Majied, an EMT with the Salem, VA, EMS

[VIDEO] 'Look for the Helpers'

Some nursing students (including BSN Class of 2022's Raniyah Majied) take their roles a step further through volunteerism. They are emergency responders, every inch of them a helper.

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Lindsay Shaw, BSN 22, a member of the diverse conversations working group.

'Calling Us In, Not Out'

One of four action groups established after the murder of George Floyd in May 2020, the 'diverse conversations' group - which included Lindsay Shaw (BSN `22) - teaches and helps students practice and understand how to respectfully disagree.

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Nurse practitioner Habibah Williams, a DNP student who earned a national AACN award for collaboration on a weight-bias reduction intervention program.

Class of 2022: Habibah Williams

Weight bIas is "slick and sneaky," says Williams (DNP `22), an NP, lead clinician at VSU student health, and creator of We Matter, the subject of her final scholarly project. "Many of us say we don’t have weight bias, but in many cases, we’re not aware that it’s going on. Healthcare providers need to recognize that weight bias actually hurts their patients."

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Milania Harris and Zahra Alisa, BSN class of 2022 and founders of AME.

Class of 2022: Milania Harris and Zahra Alisa

In the wake of George Floyd's killing in May, 2020, Milania Harris and Zahra Alisa (both BSN `22) began the new student group Advocates for Medical Equality to confront discrimination in healthcare. They earned applause, support, and spurred discussions all along the way.

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BSN class of 22 student Nichole Heon in front of the Respect Lives Here banner

In the Beginning, There Was a Banner.

Nichole Heon (BSN `22) - an active member of the Advocates for Medical Equality student group and a fervent believer in anti-racism education - said she "feels a lot of purpose in doing this kind of work." Mary Lacy Grecco (DNP `22) and Anna Woepke (CNL `22) do, too.

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CNL student Devan Kaufman

Class of 2022: Devan Kaufman

How a comatose patient under a John Deere blanket left a mark on nursing student Devan Kaufman (CNL `22).

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BSN student Ana Aguirre and CNL Mousumi Franks, her former teacher, reconnect.

Class of 2022: Mousumi Franks

Former middle school science teacher Mousumi Franks (CNL `22, right) and her student Ana Aguirre (BSN `25) bumped into one another a half-dozen years later while both were studying to become nurses.

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BSN Class of 23 nursing student Clara Keely in Valencia Spain.

Class of 2022: Clara Keely

BSN student Clara Keeley (BSN `22) 'set [her] nursing aside' for a month-long study abroad to Spain in summer 2021, even amid COVID. The experience, though, had a lot to do with the care she'll give.

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Kelly Murray and Allison Davis before a sunset in Cyprus.

Class of 2022: Kelly Murray

Kelly Murray (BSN `22) - one of several nursing students to study abroad in 2021, just as restrictions lifted - just returned from Cyprus, where she visited hospitals and historic sites alike.

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Conveying depression, sadness, anxiety, stress, COVID 19.

Class of 2022: Jane Muir

RN burnout and hospital turnover are skyrocketing. But hospitals that meaningfully address these issues save money, ER nurse and PhD graduate Jane Muir (PhD `22) asserts.

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Amelia Kirby CNL 22

Class of 2022: Amelia Kirby

Amelia Kirby (CNL `22) has created a new Planetary Health Report Card that grades nursing programs’ teaching and support of climate and health topics.

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