Skip to main content Skip to navigation

Recent PhD grad Ruth Bryant recognized for research on pressure ulcers

A portrait of Ruth Bryant in her commencement robes.
A portrait of Ruth Bryant in her commencement robes.
Ruth Bryant at WSU College of Nursing commencement, May 5, 2017.


Ruth Bryant, who received her PhD from the WSU College of Nursing earlier this month, is the first person to receive a new award from the Western Institute of Nursing Gerontological Special Interest Group.

Bryant was recognized for Best Student Presentation at the recent WIN conference in Denver for her research abstract, “Comorbid Conditions Associated with Adverse Outcomes in Patients with Pressure Ulcers.”

“Getting an award at WIN was really a surprise,” Bryant said recently.

The longtime nurse has devoted much of her career to wound healing and wound care, co-founding an accredited online program for nurses seeking advanced certification in wound, ostomy and continence care.

She wanted to pursue her doctorate and chose WSU College of Nursing because of its hybrid model, combining four weeks of in-person course work with online and distance-learning.   » More …

WSU Professor Dawn Garzon to lead national nurse practitioners’ group

Portrait of Dawn Garzon
Portrait of Dawn Garzan
Dr. Dawn Garzon, clinical professor at the WSU College of Nursing in Vancouver, has been chosen president-elect of the National Association of Pediatric Nurse Practitioners.


Dr. Dawn Garzon of the WSU College of Nursing in Vancouver has been chosen as president-elect of the National Association of Pediatric Nurse Practitioners. She will become president of the organization on July 1, 2018.

Garzon, PhD, CPNP-PC, PMHS, FAANP, has been active in the organization since 1995, and has chaired several committees and initiatives. She is a primary care Pediatric Nurse Practitioner with over 22 years experience in mental health and urgent and convenient care.

“Clinical practice grounds me and feeds my spirit. I am still as in love with the role now as I was when I first became a PNP,” Dr. Garzon told NAPNAP members during the recent election.

She joined the WSU College of Nursing in Vancouver in 2016 after working for nearly a decade as the PNP Emphasis Area Coordinator at the University of Missouri-St. Louis.

Dr. Garzon will assume her new duties within NAPNAP on July 1. The role is a three-year commitment with the first year spent as president-elect; the second as president; and the third as past-president.

Nursing student’s Photovoice project asked homeless women to document their lives and health

Portrait of Halle Schulz

It’s a simple request: take photos to answer questions about your life like “Where do you sleep?” and “Where do you get your support?” Then talk about how the images make you feel.

Simple, but the results can illuminate larger themes or community challenges.

An image of two women holding hands.
One of the photos taken by a woman who participated in nursing student Halle Schulz’s Photovoice project.

It’s called Photovoice, and it’s a qualitative research method that’s been used for more than 20 years with groups of refugees, health workers, adults with brain injuries and after-school programs. WSU College of Nursing undergraduate student Halle Schulz chose Photovoice for her Honors College research project working with a group of homeless and low-income adults at the Women’s Hearth drop-in center in Spokane.

“I was interested in learning more about the homeless population from a nursing perspective,” Schulz said. She wants to go into emergency nursing, and knows that homeless people will be among her future patients. “I thought, why not learn about the population I’m going to be serving?” she said recently. » More …

Spring Excellence Awards highlight outstanding staff, faculty and students

WSU College of Nursing faculty and staff recognize retiring senior instructor Mary Stucky with a standing ovation at the 2017 Spring Excellence Awards on May 11.


WSU College of Nursing Dean Joyce Griffin-Sobel recognized outstanding faculty, staff and students last week in ceremonies for the 2017 Spring Excellence Awards. Recipients are nominated by their peers and are chosen by a committee made up of faculty, staff and students from the College of Nursing, which has campuses and classes across the state.


PhD: Dr. Ruth Bryant (Spokane)

Ruth was a leader among her peers and consistently provided support and encouragement to her colleagues. Through her position as the Providence Health Care Scholar in Residence, she supported hospital staff nurses, DNP students and faculty members to conduct research, quality improvement projects, and evidence-based practice projects.  She has been an exquisite ambassador for the College and the nursing profession — she is the co-editor of a wound care book and internationally known expert in wound and ostomy care. She is the president-elect of the local chapter of the nursing honor society, Sigma Theta Tau International, and is active in the Inland Empire Nurses Association. Ruth is recognized for her consummate professionalism, scholarly productivity, and leadership. » More …

Simulator that trains police on bias to be featured in documentary

Dr. Lois James sitting in a chair surrounded by a film crew.
Filmmaker Robin Hauser points a laser pistol at a simulator while being filmed by a member of her crew. Hauser is filming on the WSU Spokane campus for an upcoming documentary.
Filmmaker Robin Hauser participated in Counter Bias Training Simulation on the WSU Spokane campus while filming a segment for an upcoming documentary. Photo by Cori Kogan.


A simulator developed by a WSU College of Nursing researcher that helps police officers recognize their biases in making deadly-force decisions will be featured in an upcoming documentary called “Bias.”

Award-winning filmmaker Robin Hauser was on the WSU Spokane campus this week working on the segment with Assistant Professor Dr. Lois James, who developed the Counter Bias Training Simulation program, or CBTSim. James’ co-investigator (and husband) Dr. Stephen James, assistant research professor in the Elson S. Floyd College of Medicine, also was interviewed by the filmmaker. » More …

At National Nurses Week, the WSU College of Nursing honors the past, present and future of our profession

Four College of Nursing graduates standing in a line
Four College of Nursing graduates standing in a line
WSU College of Nursing commencement falls around the same time as National Nurses Week each year.

It’s National Nurses Week, an event that has been celebrated since the 1970s but that didn’t gain official recognition until 1982, when then-President Ronald Reagan signed a proclamation for a “National Recognition Day for Nurses.”

The celebration takes place on the same dates every year – May 6-12 – because May 12 is the birthday of Florence Nightingale, the founder of modern nursing. At Washington State University, it also falls around the same time as commencement for the College of Nursing. » More …

Students, faculty honored with Chancellor’s Awards at 2017 Commencement Breakfast

Assistant Dean Jo Ann Dotson, left, with Anas Mohammad, right.
College of Nursing Dean Joyce Griffin-Sobel, left, with Chancellor's Award winner Abel Saba, second from left, and his family at the 2017 Commencement Breakfast.
College of Nursing Dean Joyce Griffin-Sobel, left, with Chancellor’s Award winner Abel Saba, second from left, and his family at the 2017 Commencement Breakfast.

Faculty, friends and family gathered Friday morning for WSU Spokane’s 2017 Commencement Breakfast, and students and faculty from the WSU College of Nursing were among those honored with Chancellor’s Awards.

They included:

  • Anas Mohammad, PhD in Nursing

    Assistant Dean Jo Ann Dotson, left, with Anas Mohammad, right.
    Assistant Dean of the WSU College of Nursing Jo Ann Dotson, left, nominated PhD student Anas Mohammad for the Chancellor’s Award.
  • Abel Saba, Bachelor of Science in Nursing
  • Megan Strom, Bachelor of Science in Nursing
  • Anthony Casim, Master of Health Policy and Administration

In addition, Dr. Kenn Daratha, an associate professor in the College of Nursing, received the Students’ Choice Award for Outstanding Faculty. » More …

Jordanian couple credit support of College of Nursing faculty on their “PhD journey”

Yasmin Musa Al-Shannaq and Anas Mohammad both are getting PhDs from the WSU College of Nursing
The Mohammad family
Yasmin Musa Al-Shannaq and Anas Mohammad came to the WSU College of Nursing for their PhDs.

Among the six doctoral students who’ll graduate from the WSU College of Nursing Friday are Anas Mohammad and Yasmin Musa Al-Shannaq, a Jordanian couple who met in nursing school and came to the United States together to pursue graduate degrees.

Just a few weeks later, they’ll leave Spokane and the U.S. to begin faculty positions at Jordan University of Science and Technology in Irbid.

The WSU College of Nursing was their first choice among several options available to them after receiving their master’s degrees from the University of Michigan, Mohammad said.

WSU is “an internationally known leader in simulation” as a teaching and learning strategy, he said. Mohammad’s doctoral research is on the use of simulation and he plans to introduce new simulation-based teaching methods in Jordan to alleviate a shortage of clinical placements. » More …

Nursing’s “pinning” ceremony is steeped in tradition

Photo of pin
Photo of a nursing student in 1955
A nursing student being “pinned” in 1955.

The day before commencement, WSU College of Nursing undergraduates will take part in 100-year-old tradition handed down from none other than Florence Nightingale – the pinning ceremony.

During convocation, students are “pinned” by a faculty member, family member or friend – someone who has been important to them in their nursing education. The act of pinning ceremonially welcomes undergrad nurses into the profession.

Each nursing school has its own pin design, many featuring an oil lamp. This design is a tribute to Nightingale, who was called “the Lady with the Lamp” by soldiers during the Crimean War in 1854.

Nightingale established a training school for nurses and is credited with revolutionizing the practice of nursing and the profession. The Nightingale School of Nursing awarded badges to nurses as they completed their program, and the practice took hold in both England and the United States.


The WSU College of Nursing will graduate 121 “prelicensure” Bachelor of Science in Nursing students this week from programs in Spokane, Yakima and the Tri-Cities. The schedule of Convocations are:

May 4 – Yakima Spring 2017 Convocation, 4 p.m., Valley Life Church

May 4 – Spokane Spring 2017 Convocation, 6 p.m., INB Performing Arts Center

May 5 – Tri-Cities Spring 2017 Convocation, 6 p.m., Red Lion Hanford Hotel 

Photo of pin
An image of the nursing pin currently used by WSU College of Nursing.

Largest-ever class of DNP students to graduate from WSU College of Nursing next week

Group photo of DNP students in Spokane
Group photo of DNP students in Spokane
Doctor of Nursing Practice students who presented their practice-improvement projects in Spokane on April 27, 2017. Other students presented projects via video link from WSU Vancouver. 

The WSU College of Nursing will graduate its largest-ever class of DNP students next week. The 23 students from across the state cleared their last hurdle with the presentation of projects on Thursday.

The Doctor of Nursing Practice is a clinically focused doctoral program, as opposed to the research-focused PhD. Many DNPs go on to careers as Family Nurse Practitioners or Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioners, or work in education or health care leadership.

Because the DNP degree focuses on evidence-based practice and quality improvement, the 23 projects presented by WSU College of Nursing students this week all had the goal of transforming medical practice. The subjects were broad: there were mentoring projects, a pilot program to address obesity, a tool for the treatment of depression, and one project on recycling.

“The DNP-prepared nurse represents a critical intersection in health care, where credible research findings are applied in clinical practice settings,” says Anne Mason, DNP Program Director at the WSU College of Nursing. “This isn’t a simple process. What students learn is not only to evaluate the scientific literature but to creatively organize that literature into meaningful practice changes. That can include changing the culture of a clinical setting, changing beliefs about best practice, changing day-to-day practice habits, organizing an interprofessional team, and sometimes all of these efforts at once.”

The American Association of Colleges of Nursing decided in 2004 to endorse the DNP as the preferred preparation for advanced nursing practice. The WSU College of Nursing launched its DNP degree program in 2012 and has graduated 42 students, not including the 23 who’ll graduate next week. The DNP degree is offered on WSU campuses in Spokane, the Tri-Cities and Vancouver. » More …

Washington State University