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Himmelfarb Headlines - February / March 2013

Faculty Profile - Dr. Sandra L. Davis, Professor and Coordinator of the Adult-Gerontology Nurse Practitioner (AGNP) Program
Sandra Davis Picture

Himmelfarb Library continues this feature in our newsletter that lets us become better acquainted with our friends and colleagues. In this issue we learn more about Dr. Sandra L. Davis, Professor and Coordinator of the Adult-Gerontology Program.

Tell us a little bit about your current position or research/projects
I am an Associate Professor and Coordinator of the Adult-Gerontology Nurse Practitioner (AGNP) Program in the School of Nursing. I am thrilled to be at GW working in the School of Nursing with such a dynamic and innovative group of nursing leaders.

As an educator, I have the opportunity to teach nurse practitioners who will provide the direction and leadership for healthcare into the future. Our graduate nursing programs are distance education programs. Although the programs are offered online, our students feel connected. They are enthusiastic about the learning because it is interactive and engaging. Our graduate online programs were ranked #1 for Faculty Credentials and Training by US News & World Report. I work with colleagues in the School of Nursing who are visionaries and experts in their field. Together, we are committed to delivering quality and excellence in online nurse practitioner (NP) education.

As coordinator of the AGNP Program, I work with students, preceptors, faculty, staff, and administrators to ensure national and accreditation standards. Administratively, this is a very exciting time for me. I was involved with the recent transition from the Adult Nurse Practitioner Program to the Adult-Gerontology Nurse Practitioner Program. The new population-focused Adult-Gerontology Nurse Practitioner Program reflects demographic and healthcare utilization trends. The expanded curriculum provides care across the entire adult population; adolescent, older adult, and frail elderly and addresses the increased need for Primary Care Providers with specialized knowledge and skill to take care of a growing older adult population.

Clinically, I practice as a nurse practitioner in the cardiac catheterization lab at GW. My research interests are in the areas of health care disparities, coronary heart disease, and simulation in nursing education. I have a special interest in mentoring and developing NP students. Last year, I co-presented a case study abstract at the Sigma Theta Tau International Nursing Honor Society Research Congress in Brisbane, Australia with an AGNP MSN student, Diane Schade. Our work was entitled, "Using innovative curriculum design and interdisciplinary, international collaboration to develop a nurse practitioner leader to impact global health outcomes."

How do you spend your free time? (or What do you do to relax?)
Two years ago, I relocated to the Washington DC area. It was a huge move. For weeks, I cleaned out closets and packed up boxes. From the attic to the basement, through the garage and out the shed, no area was left untouched. I found long-forgotten treasures and uncovered sentimental mementoes. However, I was shocked by the number of unfinished projects. The unpainted birdhouse without a roof and the dazzling hot pink scarf, with two knitting needles hanging from the bottom, were just two of the sixteen unfinished projects that had accumulated.
I decided that my new project was to take on all of the unfinished projects. However, after taking an honest assessment of my true talents, I handed over most of the unfinished projects to those who could hammer, paint, sew, knit or carve them into the objects they were meant to be. I kept just three unfinished projects for myself: the beginnings of a crocheted afghan, three crates of photo albums, and a 1960's vintage doll collection that was in need of renovation.

So, over the past two years I have been crocheting, digitizing photos, and carefully washing and ironing doll clothes. The completed fluffy cream afghan, thrown across my ottoman, adds a touch of sophistication to my home office. The two photo story books that I created, complete with narration and music, have awakened my new passion: Photo Story Booking! The process of sorting and arranging the photos, remembering and telling the story, and then selecting just the right music for mood, tone, and effect creates a wonderfully rewarding and enriching body, mind, and spirit connection. As for completing the 1960's vintage doll collection, I am calling doll restoration companies. Let the experts do it. I am engrossed in photo story booking, for now.

What library resources or services have you found to be the most useful?
The library has been exceptional in their services to students and faculty in the School of Nursing. The staff is always available for student orientations. Moreover, an online format is not a deterrent to the library staff's willingness and availability to work with students.

Just last week one of my 2013 graduating students said that she could not leave campus in May without personally meeting and thanking Gisela Butera for her untiring time and attention. She said that as a new graduate student, Ms. Butera helped her to make the connection to GW, to embrace technology, and to take advantage of all that the library had to offer. This experience made her graduate course work more meaningful and relevant.

Elaine Sullo has been outstanding as the reference librarian for our Primary Care Seminar Course. By utilizing her own discussion board forum, Ms. Sullo gets to know the students as she discusses and explains evidence-based sources, systematic reviews, and point-of-care references.

Alexandra Gomes has been wonderful with assisting new faculty. Ms. Gomes exhibits service excellence as she constantly demonstrates ways in which the Himmelfarb library can enhance the teaching and learning experience for both faculty and students at GW.

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