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Sarah Sheets Cook, DrNP, RN-CS is the Dorothy M. Rogers Professor of Clinical Nursing at Columbia University School of Nursing.  Known primarily for her work in teaching and practice in maternal-child health nursing, Dr. Cook was the first faculty member of the School of Nursing to have a contributory faculty practice, and pioneered the role of “attending nurse,” taking students to her practice while providing care to patients.  This later became the basis for the School of Nursing’s universal faculty practice plan.  Dr. Cook has served several times as chairperson for pediatric and/or maternal-child health nursing education, and served on multiple School of Nursing and University committees. She became Assistant Dean for Administrative Affairs in 1987, Associate Dean for Academic and Clinical Affairs in 1988, Senior Associate Dean in 1994, and Vice Dean in 1997.  Dr. Cook is an active member in the legislative networks of numerous nursing, public health, medical, and university organizations.  She acts as administrative director of the School of Nursing World Health Organization Collaborating Center for the International Development of Advanced Practice, helping to initiate, develop, and maintain international nursing student and faculty projects.

Dr. Cook’s interest in competency-based education has led to the development of self-paced, outcome-oriented courses in pediatric nursing, obstetrical nursing, maternal and infant nutrition, human growth and development, the promotion of health and prevention of illness through the life cycle, and genetics.  Her interests as a clinical scholar are multiple: assessing health care needs of women of all ages; providing interventions that yield the most positive outcomes; determining methods to assure or improve these outcomes; exploring new methods to meet existing health care needs, especially for technology-dependent, medically fragile pediatric patients, and gestational diabetics.  Several innovative clinical research projects have evolved from her practice: methods of prenatal education to promote successful breastfeeding and weight gain in pregnancy, based on Institute of Medicine/National Academy of Sciences guidelines; teaching inner-city residents to become paraprofessional parent education liaisons; planning community-based, multi-site intervention projects for adolescent mothers and children; and identifying a role and curriculum in genetics for advanced practice nurses.  She published several articles resulting from her practice and research about nursing education, children’s and families’ responses to illness and death, and patient  education materials tailored to the needs of the clients in her practice.

 Columbia University School of Nursing
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