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Faculty Spotlights

Date Posted: Tuesday, November 30, 2021

Shari Harding article publication: Harding, S. L.  (2021).  Intermittent fasting: Clinical considerations.  The Journal for Nurse Practitioners, [e-pub 2/21/21] Intermittent Fasting: Clinical Considerations - ScienceDirect

Shari Harding contributed the "OCD and Related Disorders" chapter to a recently published textbook:  I Rhoads & P. J. M. Murphy (Eds.), Clinical consult to psychiatric nursing for advanced practice.  New York, Springer Publishing.

A video showing scenes of the past year reminds us how we are all UMass strong.

UMass Chan Medical School faculty reflect:
Michael Hirsh, MD, and Matilde Castiel, MD, provide comments in this Telegram & Gazette article.
Chancellor Michael F. Collins and Jill Terrien, PhD, ANP-BC, joined Michael Hirsh, MD, on WCCA-TV.

Mechelle J. Plasse, PhD, APRN-BC, Assistant Professor presented her abstract at International Society of Psychiatric-Mental Health Nurses 23rd Annual Conference. Abstract Title: Incorporating allyship and social justice into a competency-based graduate nursing curriculum: A parallel process of critical consciousness and skill acquisition. Abstract: Compassionate, socially conscious healthcare providers who are ready to commit to being agents of change are needed. Using the leverage that comes with positions of power and privilege, providers must become allies with patient communities and address the socially unjust discriminatory practices endemic to the healthcare system. Nursing has roots in social justice but graduate nurse practitioner programs have become heavily competency-based, including the psychiatric mental health nurse practitioner (PMHNP) curriculum.  Through the creation of a transformational learning environment the PMHNP curriculum can offer a synchronous and complimentary trajectory for the development of the credentialing body competencies alongside the raising of critical consciousness. Transformational learning theory elements will be used as a scaffolding for curriculum design, weaving skill development and sociopolitical concepts equally throughout.  By creating dissonant learning experiences followed by critical reflection exercises and facilitated dialogue the PMHNP learner will be far better prepared to apply a critical lens when considering bias within policy, practice and other organizational or structural processes. These are the necessary skills needed as a social change agent. This presentation will outline the steps in creating this inclusive curriculum which poises the PMHNP to take up the advocacy and allyship call to action for social justice.  

Sharing the tremendous effort our 3 schools of students are doing in the realm of covid-19 related projects, vaccination and outreach to the community.  This is truly an interprofessional effort. March 9th marked the last day of the UMMS employee vaccination drive. UMMS students volunteered more than 640 hours on this project, and collectively these sites provided. 40,000 vaccinations. Second, we want to spotlight this article, which highlights the efforts of our volunteers to have conversations with patients about the COVID-19 vaccines, in addition to vaccinating.  

Syringes, Oranges, and Faculty Help Train More Than 100 Volunteer COVID Vaccinators.  Tan Chingfen Graduate School of Nursing involvement: Jill Terrien; Janet Hale; Students;  Helen Tsiagras, Madeline Lane, Amanda Sylvia and Allison Carlson (all DNP year 1 and in my CSL group). Read more:

NONPF: Alaina Valcourt, BSN, RN, Heather Lovelace, MS, FNP-BC, RN, Jean Boucher, PhD, ANP-BC, Michele Pugnaire, MD Title: “Innovative Strategies for Nurse Practitioner Education: Virtual Interprofessional Global Health Initiative During a Worldwide Pandemic”

ENRS: Alexandra Young MS, AGACNP-BC; Dawn Carpenter, DNP, ACNP-BC, CCRN, Alexander Menard DNP, AGACNP-BC, Michelle O’Rourke, DNP, RN, CCRN, Erin Guyette MSN, RN, Johnny Isenberger MS, ACNP-BC, Ulysses Torres, MD.  “Pedal to the Metal: Nurse-Led Early Mobility Protocol Using Cycle Ergometry for Adult Surgical ICU Patients”

NONPF 47th Annual Conference Submission
Rachel Richards, DNP, ANP-BC, Coordinator, Adult Gerontology Primary Care Nurse Practitioner Program Track; Susan Feeney, DNP, FNP-BC, Coordinator, Family Nurse Practitioner Program Track; Alexander Menard, DNP, AGACNP-BC, Coordinator, Adult Gerontology Acute Care Nurse Practitioner Program Track. Title: Innovation and Adaptation During a Pandemic. Abstract Text: The COVID-19 pandemic presented many challenges and opportunities for    graduate nursing education. Federal, state and local travel bans, and social distancing policies were enacted to slow the spread of the virus. Suspension of clinical rotations and transition to  distance learning ensued.  A decisive and innovative response and course redesign was required to sustain graduate program progression. At the UMass Chan Medical School,    Tan Chingfen Graduate School of Nursing 3-prong approach ensuring competency, communication and outcome-focused was developed to preserve program progression, degree conferral and certification exam eligibility.

Women’s Health Concentration: We’ve had many students over the years express an interest in practicing in women's health.  The Contemporary Issues in Women's Health elective (N 691) was developed & has been offered since 2006.  In 2018 we developed a new advanced course in women's health (N 693).  As part of the new Concentration in Women’s Health students take both courses (N691 & N693) the summer before the clinical practice year. So far 20 students have completed this new Concentration. Three Tan Chingfen Graduate School of Nursing Alumni teach the courses. N691 course is taught by Rosemary Theroux (PhD) & Cathy Violette (DNP) and N693 course is taught by Mary Fischer (PhD). All three are certified women's health nurse practitioners (WHNP-BC) with many years of clinical practice, including UMass Memorial Medical Center Women's health Services.

Jill M. Terrien PhD, ANP-BC, Associate Dean, Interprofessional and Community Partnerships along with  Dr. John Broach and Dr. Michael Hirsh are named Arnold P. Gold Foundation Champions of Humanistic Care. that prompted the Arnold P. Gold Foundation to name John Broach, MD, MPH; Michael Hirsh, MD; and Jill Terrien, PhD, Champions of Humanistic Care.

Dawn Carpenter, DNP, ACNP-BC, CCRN wrote the attached article with several colleagues.  See page 16 for our article "Is the Nurse Practitioner Role right for you".  This is a follow up article in the same journal describing the differences in APRN roles and NP populations.

Patricia White was a speaker in June 2021 at the First International Palliative Nursing Masterclass which was hosted by faculty at the University of Rhode Island, the University of Transylvania in Brashov and  Physicians  and Nurses of the Hospices  HOSPICE Casa Sperantei in Brashov Romania. There were over 50 nurses and other professionals from Eastern Europe and some countries in Western Europe who attended virtually. Patricia spoke on the topic of ethics in palliative care. Plans are underway for the Second conference in 2022.

Dr. Ken Peterson, Assistant Professor; Jaya Rawla and Everlyne Njoroge Class of 2021 DNP Students  published an article in the May/June issue of Worcester Medicine. “Nursing Notes: Concordance on the Front Lines of Patient Care Delivery”. Read more here, page 14:

Junior Faculty Development Program: Congratulations to Tan Chingfen Graduate School of Nursing staff member Ricardo Poza, MEd, Assistant Dean of Curriculum Innovation for completing the Junior Faculty Development Program he will be honored during a virtual graduation ceremony on Thursday at 5 p.m. Check out the list of graduates and tune in:

Lisa Gaimari, ANP was honored with an Appreciation Award at Worcester State University for her COVID19 efforts this year.    

Co-Authored by Mechelle Plasse, PhD., APRN-PMH-BC, UMass Chan Medical School Tan Chingfen Graduate School of Nursing. ISPN (2021). Mitigating the stress and mental health trauma of COVID-19 for nurses and healthcare providers (Position statement). 032021_ISPN Statement_ MITIGATINGfinal.pdf (

AAP Announces Finalists For 2021 Prose Awards Honoring Scholarly Works! We are overjoyed and proud that Tan Chingfen Graduate School of Nursing’s Associate Dean for Advanced Practice Programs, Karen Dick PhD, GNP-BC, FAANP on the selection of her book “Geriatric Primary Care and Multimorbidity Management” 1e as a Prose Award Finalist for 2021.  This book was written to provide a case-based approach to the care of older adults. Several Tan Chingfen Graduate School of Nursing faculty contributed chapters including Jean Boucher, Dawn Carpenter, Susan Feeney, Nancy Morris, Ken Peterson, Mary Sullivan, and Patricia White. The book  received two Book of the Year awards from American Journal of Nursing in the categories of geriatric nursing (first place) and advanced practice nursing (second place). 

Dr. Mechelle Plasse, Assistant Professor and Program Coordinator for the Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner track: Published in Massachusetts Report on Nursing.  Read her article “Running towards the fire: recognizing and managing traumatic distress among acute care health providers amid a pandemic” 

Journal article: Psychosocial support for providers working high-risk exposure units during a pandemic: A critical discussion, Nursing         Inquiry  Published Jan 2021

Podium conference presentation (virtual) titled: "Incorporating allyship and social justice into a competency-based graduate nursing curriculum: A parallel process of critical consciousness and skill acquisition" @ International Society for Psychiatric Nursing (ISPN) 23rd annual conference:  Resiliency in Action: Advocating for Healthy Communities on March 25, 2021.

Gayle Gravlin Ed.D., RN, NEA-BC; Mary Fortunato-Habib DNP, MS, RN; and Donna Gemme DNP, MS, RN presented at the AACN Doctoral Education Conference in January 2021.  Their presentation “Organizational and Systems Leadership: Using a “Shark Tank” Approach to Apply Business Principles for Practice Change” purpose was to describe an innovative approach for teaching DNP learners to apply healthcare finance concepts to clinically impactful organizational change projects.  Watch the whole presentation here:

Congratulations! Shari Harding, DNP, PMHNP-BC, CARN-AP, CPRP, Assistant Professor on her article “Supporting the Oral Health Needs of Individuals with Mental Illness” in the January/February 2021 Oral Health issue of Worcester Medicine.  Read the article (page 11) here:

Gallery of Leadership - Addressing Racism and Inequality
AACN is proud to announce this new section of our Gallery of Leadership focused on addressing racism and inequality and fostering inclusive learning environments.
To recognize academic nursing's work to address structural racism and advance equitable change, AACN has developed a Gallery of Leadership, which features insights and inspirations from member deans. A new introductory video has been created to highlight specific ways academic nursing leaders are moving to redesign systems and foster more inclusive learning environments.  
Our Tan Chingfen Graduate School of Nursing video has made it to the AACN Gallery of Leadership.  With contributions from Joan Vitello, Dean of the Tan Chingfen Graduate School of Nursing; Max Quinn, Assistant Dean of Student   Affairs and Enrollment Management; Ken Peterson, Assistant Professor; and Ricardo Poza, Assistant Dean of Curriculum Innovation. Click on the images to view videos

Morris, N. S., Nnaji, C., & Sarkis, M. (2021). “Was test designed for                Africans?” Health literacy and African Immigrants. Journal of Racial and      Ethnic Health Disparities .   
Link: With acknowledgement of funding through the UMass Chan Medical School Tan Chingfen Graduate School of Nursing Seed Grant Program

Mechelle Plasse, PhD, APRN-BC
Psychosocial support for providers working high risk exposure settings during a pandemic: A critical discussion
Psychological first aid is a form of support designed to lessen disaster related distress. In a pandemic, providers may need such support but with the high risk of exposure, such a program is offered.