In This Issue

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Alumni, students, and faculty are welcome to submit news for an upcoming e-newsletter. Newsletters are produced monthly. Please send news items and questions to Denise Yankou at

Upcoming Events

Tues., March 20
11:30-2:00 pm

"Women's Health & Midwifery Students Conduct Poster Presentations of Systematic Reviews"
Student Nurses' Lounge
Georgian Building, 2nd Floor
617 W 168th Street

Join Women's Health and Midwifery nurse practitioner program students as they present posters that demonstrate the process of investigating literature for best practices related to several health issues that women can experience during their life. Flier

Mon., March 26
12:00-1:00 pm

Center for Health Policy Lunch Seminar
Student Nurses' Lounge
Georgian Building, 2nd Floor
617 W 168th Street

Jeremiah Schuur, MD, Director of Quality & Patient Safety and Director of Performance Improvement for Emergency Medicine at Brigham and Women's Hospital in Boston, will discuss healthcare associated infections (HAIs) in emergency departments. RSVP to Barbara Luna at Flier

Fri., May 4, 2012
8:30 am-5:00 pm

All Alumni Reunion
Morgan Stanley Children's Hospital
3959 Broadway (at 165th Street), 1st Floor
New York, NY 10032

Click here for details and registration information.

Tues., May 15, 2012
10:00 am

CUSON Commencement Ceremony
The New Balance Track & Field Center at the Armory Arena
216 Fort Washington Avenue (at West 168th Street)

Click here for details and for information on University commencement on May 16.

Programs, Centers, and Initiatives

ANP Panel
Ms. Evanina. Photo credit: Wilkes Magazine

Nurse Anesthesia Program
Program Director Profiled in Academic Magazine
Nurse Anesthesia Program director and Assistant Professor of Clinical Nursing Eileen Evanina, MS was profiled as a notable alumna in the winter 2012 issue of Wilkes Magazine, published by Wilkes University. Ms. Evanina has a bachelor’s and master’s from Wilkes School of Nursing and is a Doctor of Nursing Practice candidate at CUSON. The article, “Success Times Two,” highlights her journey from self-described “welfare mom,” to honors student, to successful nurse anesthetist and educator. The article ends:

"Remembering those who told her that poor kids couldn’t attend college or that women just raised children and worked as secretaries, Evanina has this advice for today’s students: 'Don’t let someone else tell you what you ‘cannot’ do.'”

Dean's Office
CUSON Announces New Teaching Academy
The School is pleased to announce a new teaching academy named in honor of the founder of the School, Anna Caroline Maxwell. The Maxwell Academy is one of four new Columbia University Medical Center teaching academies; the other three are in the College of Physicians and Surgeons, College of Dental Medicine, and Mailman School of Public Health. All four are part of a re-organized Glenda Garvey Teaching Academy (GGTA). Members of the four academies will automatically be members in the over-arching GGTA. Each academy is positioned to offer more individualized programs for while also participating in GGTA-sponsored activities. GGTA is the only national interdisciplinary health-professional teaching academy. It fosters teaching as a scholarly activity, recognizes outstanding educators, provides role models for faculty who wish to become outstanding educators, and promotes innovation in curricular offerings.

Initial Maxwell Academy members are from the original GGTA group and will provide the organizing leadership. They include Assistant Professor of Clinical Physiology in Nursing Sally Aboelela, PhD; Stone Foundation and Elise D. Fish Professor in Clinical Health Care for the Underserved Mary Byrne, PhD; Assistant Professor of Clinical Nursing Jennifer Dohrn, DNP; Associate Professor of Clinical Nursing Rita Marie John, DNP, EdD; and Associate Professor of Clinical Nursing Arlene Smaldone, DNSc. The Maxwell Academy is receiving applications for new members by invitation; these members will meet the same criteria as the original GGTA members. For more information, view the website or contact Vice Dean Sarah Cook, DNP, at

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Dean Berkowitz

Dean Bobbie Berkowitz Speaks on Diversity in Columbia Spectator Article
Since joining CUSON in September 2010, Dean Bobbie Berkowitz has committed to increasing the School’s diversity as part of its strategic plan. She discussed this in a recent Columbia Spectator article, noting that creating a culture of inclusion is important so that “‘our actions, and who we are, and what we care about, makes people feel that we are a place for someone like them.’” Click here to read the article, “Grad schools develop plans to diversify.”

Nurse Midwifery Program
Recent Alumni Published in Peer-Reviewed Journal
Nurse Midwifery Program alumni Sarit Shatken ’10, Kaitlyn Greenough ’09 ’10, and Christina McPherson ’09 ’10 have published an article in the January/February 2012 issue of the Journal of Midwifery and Women’s Health, a peer-reviewed journal. The article, titled “Epidural Fever and Its Implications for Mothers and Neonates: Taking the Heat,” was written as a class assignment for the course Professional Issues of Midwifery, taught by Assistant Professor of Clinical Nursing Laura Zeidenstein, DNP. Dr. Zeidenstein was also mentor/advisor for the written submission.

ANP Panel
An ineffective calorie count on a Harlem Dunkin' Donuts menu

CUSON Faculty Publish Study on Making Menu Boards More Practically Useful
Assistant Professor of Nursing Elizabeth Cohn, DNSc; Associate Dean for Research Elaine Larson, PhD; and Assistant Professor of Clinical Nursing Christina Araujo, MS published a study, “Calorie Postings in Chain Restaurants in a Low-Income Urban Neighborhood: Measuring Practical Utility and Policy Compliance,” in the Journal of Urban Health last month. The authors canvassed over 200 menu boards in Harlem chain restaurants and concluded that, though the restaurants comply with a new law requiring calorie counts on menus, the information is not practically useful. The calorie counts, when available, are presented in ranges that require complex math skills to interpret. The authors recommend instead a series of slashes that would help consumers quickly discern the healthier choices. These recommendations were submitted to the Food and Drug Administration for consideration of how the new calorie-posting policy should be implemented. The study was also reported by several media outlets, including NPR (All Things Considered), New York Daily News, and the National Institute of Health’s Science News Online.

Alumni News

CUSON Alumnus Joins WHO Committee
Nurse Anesthesia Program alumnus Cliff Roberson '04 was recently appointed to the Education and Training Committee for the World Health Organization’s Global Initiative for Emergency and Essential Surgical Care (GIEESC). GIEESC is a collaboration of Ministries of Health, WHO country offices, local and international organizations, and academia that reduces death and disability from surgical conditions in low-and middle-income countries. The committee will update WHO toolkits that promote safe surgery and anesthesia in developing healthcare systems and will steward the WHO educational agenda in surgical and anesthesia care for the next decade.

Mr. Roberson joins 300 committee members from 60 countries. Since graduation, he has been an active CRNA volunteer and has worked in anesthesia safety and education on a global level. He has served with CUSON’s WHO Collaborating Center for Advanced Practice Nursing, Doctors Without Borders, International Medical Corps, and Health Volunteers Overseas in places such as Haiti, Palestine, Sudan, Vietnam, Bhutan, and Mexico. He also serves on the Anesthesia Committee for the Alliance for Surgery and Anesthesia Presence and the Nurse Anesthesia Steering Committee for Health Volunteers Overseas. He anticipates completing a Doctor of Nursing Practice degree at Vanderbilt University School of Nursing in May 2012.

Research Study Opportunity for NPs Practicing in a Primary Care Setting
If you are a nurse practitioner practicing in a primary care setting, Columbia University School of Nursing invites you to participate in a research study, “Development and Initial Testing of the Nurse Practitioner Primary Care Organizational Climate Questionnaire (NP-PCOCQ).” The study, led by principal investigator and Assistant Professor of Nursing Lusine Poghosyan, PhD will develop a new survey tool that will be used to evaluate organizational climate in primary care settings from the nurse practitioner perspective. If you qualify and are interested in participating in the study, send your mailing address to Dr. Poghosyan at She will then mail you the questionnaire with a prepaid envelope. The questionnaire should take about 10 minutes to complete, and the first 40 respondents to return their completed questionnaires to the research team will receive a $20 gift card.

This study has International Review Board funding (IRB# AAAI9654). For more information and a printable flier, click here.

Student News

ANP Panel
Incoming CUSON student & Mailman School of Public Health student Sunny Soroosh taking a bow at The Vagina Monologues. Photo credit: Annie Tiberio

Students and Faculty Perform in Columbia University Medical Center’s The Vagina Monologues
In February, Assistant Professor of Clinical Nursing Christina Araujo, MS and students Rita Anderson, Kristen Campbell, Laura Dekker, Anna Lederman, Ashley Hunsberger, Tatiana Ripnick, Ashley Tedone, and Sara Yerkes performed in CUMC’s production of The Vagina Monologues. The award-winning play is based on playwright Eve Ensler’s interviews with more than 200 women. It has been praised for empowering women all over the world to take control of their bodies and for giving a voice to experiences not previously exposed in public; performing the play is an annual tradition on many school campuses. To see more photos from CUMC’s performance, click here.

ANP Panel
Ms. Best

CUSON Welcomes New Student Activities Coordinator
The School welcomes Kinshasa “Sasha” Best as its student activities coordinator, a new position that will enhance student life. Ms. Best will lead the formation of a student life infrastructure at the School of Nursing, working closely with students and school administration to develop tailored events, activities, and programs. Along with the Student Affairs team, she will build on the current student ambassador program and develop it into a student mentorship program. Focusing on a quality student-life experience, Ms. Best will create an enriching environment in which School of Nursing students will be able to pursue their diverse interests, participate in meaningful service and community projects, and connect socially within the School and across Columbia.

Annual Fund

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2011 Scholarship Recipients

Last year, gifts to the Annual Fund underwrote scholarships for each of the nursing students pictured above. Every dollar contributed to the Annual Fund is directed to providing expendable financial aid. Please lend your support this year by giving to the Annual Fund via this secure link.

Columbia University School of Nursing
Mailing Address:
630 W 168th Street
Mail Code 6
New York, NY 10032
Physical Address:
617 W 168th Street
New York, NY 10032
(212) 305-3742 (800) 899-6728
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