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MSU College of Nursing eNews

November 2014

Nursing News


Breast Cancer Awareness Year Round
Faculty Conversations: Mary Smania

Even though October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month, awareness about breast cancer can be spread throughout the year. According to Mary Smania, breast cancer is the most common cancer to women, second to skin cancer and more than 200,000 women are diagnosed each year. “It’s really important for women to get screened and to get treatment,” Smania said. As part of her clinical practice, she provides many different resources to those women who have either benign breast disease or breast cancer. Smania also helps coordinate testing for the BRCA mutation. She has created an app called BRCA Risk to help care providers evaluate women who have the genetic mutation.

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Nursing Students Ready to Help

"When you look at the disparities between how many women die in developed countries and how many die in sub-saharan Africa, the difference is so big," said nursing PhD student Yenupini Joyce Tonlaar. "It is my passion to decrease maternal mortality."

Tonlaar traveled to south eastern Africa last summer for her research. She says it's her responsibility to be prepared when working in areas that are endemic for ebola. Students receive training on universal precautions such as how to deal with body fluids. "Wherever you go there are illnesses, but that doesn't prevent people from working. It doesn't prevent people from living."

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Helping Older Adults Stay Home for Care

Sandra Spoelstra is leading the way by helping older adults stay home for care. A $600,000, three-year grant from the Rita & Alex Hillman Foundation will be used to expand MiCAPABLE. This nursing-driven program provides team-based home care and home repair services to 15,000 lower-income older adults who are nursing-home eligible yet trying to remain at home. The funding will allow the team to expand the program to three of Michigan’s 20 Medicaid waiver sites and will be used to train clinicians and offer MiCAPABLE to 270 patients.

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Data Gathering on Adolescents with Type-1 Diabetes

Denise Hershey is part of a research project team funded by MSU and Sparrow’s Center for Innovation and Research. They will gather baseline data on adolescents with Type-1 diabetes. The data will be used to prepare a National Institutes of Health grant proposal titled: Using a mHealth app to transition care of Type-1 diabetes from parents to teens.

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Alumni Update: Q & A with Alexendra Tricozzi

Alexandra Tricozzi (CON BSN '13) attributes her professional success as a Certified Pediatric Nurse to the well versed preparation she received as a Spartan. I knew I wanted to work with children and had heard about nurse residencies. Cook Children’s Medical Center currently has the nation’s only accredited, pediatric nurse residency program. I decided to apply and ended up receiving an interview. Several weeks later they offered me the position to be a Nurse Resident. I am no longer considered a “Nurse Resident” as it is a year-long program that I have since graduated from. However, I am so thankful for the experience because I feel it quickly shaped me into a competent, well-rounded nurse.

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Alumni Bestowed Recent Graduate Achievement Award

“At the MSU College of Nursing I was mentored by committed, compassionate professors and supported unconditionally by my Mom. Inspiration surrounded me and I survived the endless nights of writing care plans and terrifying experiences of entering patient rooms for the first time,” said Jessica Diver (CON BSN ’05). Diver is recipient of the 2014 recent graduate achievement award. Diver works as a Pediatric Nurse Practitioner in the Blood and Marrow Stem Cell Transplant Program where she cares for patients in the inpatient and outpatient settings and coordinates care for transplant and bone marrow failure patients.

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Strengthening Leadership in Nursing

The increasingly complex worlds of healthcare, higher education, and the profession of nursing all intersect at our College. Nurses play a major role in healthcare delivery and will play an even greater role as American healthcare changes.

When you give to the College you become part of something extraordinary. You make the seemingly impossible possible and you turn dreams into realities. Follow your passion and empower current and future Spartan Nurses to make dynamic contributions to twenty-first century healthcare.

The College seeks to raise $14.1 million in the Empower Extraordinary campaign. We will achieve this goal with a mix of endowment and annual funds. To date we have raised $9 million, but more private support is needed to achieve our full potential and propel this great university forward.

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National Nurse Practitioner Week, November 9-15. NPs are the healthcare providers of choice for millions of Americans each year, thanks to the high-quality, patient-centered primary, acute, and specialty care they provide. In celebration of 192,000 NPs, MSU College of Nursing NP faculty share their experience on Facebook.



December 13

University Undergraduate Commencement


College of Nursing Convocation & Pinning Ceremony





Susanne Brook received the Carol E. Franck Nursing Leadership Endowed Award that honors nurses who have taken an active role in representing nursing and nurses to a wider public

Mary Jane Cook received the Graduate Faculty Teaching Excellence Award which recognizes a graduate faculty member whose teaching demonstrates exceptional quality and significance to nursing.

Danielle Collareno, Traditional BSN student, is the recipient of the fall Class of 2014 Outstanding Student Award.

Barb and Bill Given receive the Dr. Harold Burdette Research Award from the Walther Cancer Institute.

Andrew Greger received the Carol Barthel Spirit Award for faculty and staff members who contribute positively to the climate of the College.

Amy Hoffman received the Marjorie A. Holmes College of Nursing Faculty Enrichment Endowed Award, recognizing and encouraging innovative and creative scholarly activity.

Della Hughes-Carter received the Billie Diane Gamble Undergraduate Faculty Teaching Excellence/Enrichment Award, presented to a faculty member who demonstrates sustained excellence in undergraduate teaching.

Kelsey Ignat, Traditional BSN student, is the recipient of the fall Class of 2014 Spirit Award.

Carolyn Pickering has been appointed to the Professional Issues Panel on Workplace Violence and Incivility advisory committee to the American Nurses Association Professional Issues Panel.





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Director of PhD Program

Nurse Practitioner Assistant Professor Health Programs

Tenure System Faculty Position

Assistant Professor for Health Programs


Clinical Nurse Specialist

Temporary Staffing Employment Opportunities

Nurse Practitioner Instructor/ Assistant/ Associate/Full Professor