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January 2009 Issue

Campus Digest

MCG Program Incubates Nurse Researchers

The Medical College of Georgia School of Nursing has an innovative program designed to attract nursing faculty and boost nursing research.

“We find ourselves with a critical need for research faculty,” says School of Nursing Dean Lucy Marion, citing factors such as a worldwide nursing shortage, sparse research funding nationwide and the difficulty of recruiting seasoned investigators.

MCG’s Nurse Scientist Incubator aims to attract junior research faculty by giving them dedicated research time and monetary support for two years. Participants are expected to obtain National Institutes of Health funding, increase publications and present research at national and international conferences during that time. Other features include on-campus mentoring and an off-campus postdoctoral fellowship hosted by nurse scientists in top-10 nursing research programs.

Although the incubator started as a “grow-our-own” concept, it’s not limited to MCG graduates. Two non-alumni faculty members have joined the program, and say the incubator drew them to MCG.

“The incubator program guarantees the protected time to pursue grants and write manuscripts to build my CV so that I can get high-level grants,” says Dr. Andrea Boyd, who joined the faculty in July after earning her Ph.D. in nursing from the University of Florida. “More importantly it allows me to develop relationships with researchers who can help me understand what I need to do and get the next step in place.”

“Because there’s such a shortage of nurses and nursing faculty, teaching demands are intense,” says another non-alumna, Dr. Tami Thomas. “There are so many classes to teach that mentoring and focused time for research is a huge challenge. [Having] this concentrated period of time to get your feet off the ground is remarkable.”

Posted by john.vanchella@usg.edu on January 08, 2009
Published in: On Campus

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