Two undergraduate nursing students from Korea, Sun Young Cho and Eu Jin Lee visited the UAB School of Nursing as visiting scholars foKorea_2_smallr two weeks from Jan. 30 to Feb. 10, 2012.  They are junior students at the Yonsei University, Department of Nursing, in Wonju, Korea. The Department of Nursing at the Yonsei University began offering a scholarship program for undergraduate students to gain intercultural communication skills and new cultural perspectives along with an expanded knowledge in nursing. Sun Young and Eu Jin were selected as the first recipients of the program based on their outstanding academic standing and leadership qualities.

Since 2006 the Yonsei University has had an established partnership with the UAB School of Medicine to provide clinical educational opportunities for their medical students. For the first time, the School of Nursing had visiting  scholars from Korea.  The pKorea_smallurposes of their visiting were to expand their knowledge of nursing through attending BSN level classes and obtain an international perspective on nursing practice.  

In collaboration with a UAB School of Nursing faculty facilitator, Dr. Youngshook Han, the visiting scholars engaged in a wide variety of activities according to their learning objectives and interests. The activities included attending classes, participating in simulation activities, working with the Student Nurses' Association students in “Step Up to Wellness” Health Fair and UAB Basketball Concession Stand, visiting UAB Hospital, shadowing a nurse on a unit, shadowing a nurse practitioner, and attending an evidence-based practice meeting at UAB Hospital.

"I chose to come here because not only I could learn something for my own career development, but also I could help my school to create more future collaboration opportunities with the School of Nursing," Eu Jin said. They enjoyed Birmingham very much and felt privileged to be the first visiting scholars in the United States.  “I am sure what I have learned here today will benefit my school and myself in the future. It is a great learning experience that you will cherish a lifetime!" said Sun Young.  They expressed gratitude for the assistance and love they had received from the SON students, faculty, as well as to the scholarship program for sponsoring their visit. Eu Jin said, “Everyone we met here was very kind, friendly, and helpful. This trip has truly enhanced my view of nursing and has renewed my commitment to excellence in providing the best quality healthcare.”

Dr. Han said, “Visiting scholars from other cultures provide an educational experience for our students and faculty to develop and strengthen their skills in intercultural communications and develop a global view of nursing.  They bring new cultural and professional perspectives to the School of Nursing community, as well as help expand the School’s understanding of the roles and challenges of the global health nurse.”

The School of Nursing has been working with partners in Zambia since 2006 on several projects, building on the long-standing partnership established through the Center for Infectious Disease Research in Zambia (CIDRZ), and programs supported by the UAB Sparkman Center for Global Health. One of these projects involves working with the General Nursing Council of Zambia, the Zambia Union of Nursing Organizations, the University of Zambia, the Lusaka School of Nursing, CIDRZ, AIDS Relief, the Zambia Ministry of Health, and other partners to develop a distance-based certificate program to prepare nurses for advanced roles in care, treatment and support of patients with HIV and AIDS. The photo below illustrates many of the key partners who participated in a curriculum development workshop to develop the curriculum for the HIV Nurse Practitioner diploma program in January, 2009.


For information on other collaborations in Zambia please view the Zambia section under Global Health Partnerships in the UAB School of Nursing.

Dr. Lynda Wilson and members of the Curriculum Advisory Group for the HIV Nurse Practitioner Diploma program at a meeting in Zambia January 28, 2009.

 

School of Nursing Hosts Professional Fellows from Zambia and Malawi

The world is truly a global village, and the UAB School of Nursing is committed to promoting global health opportunities in research, education, and service for students, faculty, and partners at home and abroad.  Through a grant from the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs at the U.S. Department of State, the UAB School of Nursing served as one of 16 exchange sites in the U.S. for the Professional Fellows Program- the only such site in Alabama.  The program provided substantial professional development and support to emerging leaders working in the fields of global health, legislative development, climate change, food security, and educational initiatives aimed at bolstering employment opportunities in their home countries.  U.S.-based, non-profit organizations and universities were eligible to participate as an exchange site for the program. 

Through the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs, the UAB School of Nursing along with university and community partners hosted 25 foreign healthcare professionals from Zambia and Malawi participating in the Professional Fellows Program.  Malawian participants then traveled to the University of California in San Francisco for tailored learning opportunities.  Among host partners are the University of California in San Francisco, UAB School of Health Professions, UAB School of Medicine, and the McWhorter School of Pharmacy at Samford University.  International exchange partners include the University of Zambia, Global AIDS Interfaith Alliance in Malawi, University of Malawi, and the National Institute of Public Administration in Zambia. 

Each of the two programs (May and October 2011) began with the Professional Fellows gathering in Washington, D.C. to take part in the Professional Fellows Congress.  The Congress focused on such themes as interprofessional collaboration, civic engagement, coalition building, advocacy and media outreach.  Throughout 2011, more than 500 foreign professionals from over 30 countries engaged in similar hands-on fellowship experiences in placements at organizations and universities across the U.S.  Also in 2011 and in 2012, the exchange program included more than 300 Americans participating in reciprocal fellowship programs overseas.

Fellows participated in seminars and workshops focused on interprofessional education with a focus on preparing students to address health needs of marginalized populations.  During this time, fellows also worked with faculty collaborators in their field to address individual learning goals such as curriculum development or teaching strategies.  Zambian fellows were paired with faculty collaborators at UAB and Samford University.  Fellows from Malawi were paired with faculty collaborators at the University of California at San Francisco and traveled to San Francisco for focused experiences.  This component of the fellowship provided participants with hands-on experiences in public health organizations and advocacy groups that serve urban and rural communities.  Faculty from UAB, Samford, and UCSF also traveled to Zambia and Malawi for two weeks in 2011 and 2012 to cultivate sustainable partnerships with fellows and partner organizations.
 

 An article describing the outcomes of this program was published in 2014: Wilson, L. L., Somerall, D., Theus, L., Rankin, S., Ngoma, C., & Chimwaza, A. (2014). Enhancing global health and education in Malawi, Zambia, and the United States through an Interprofessional Global Health Exchange Program. Applied Nursing Research, 27, 97-103.

Paul D. Coverdell Peace Corps Fellow Program

In 2008, the School of Nursing was approved by the Peace Corps as a Paul D. Coverdell Program (henceforth referred to as the Peace Corps Fellows). This program is available to returned Peace Corps Volunteers (RPCVs) who pursue graduate studies in a variety of subject areas. More than 40 universities currently participate in this program, offering financial assistance to RPCVs, and opportunities for them to use the knowledge and skills they developed during their overseas service during their graduate work as they participate in service learning projects with underserved communities. Information about this program is available at the Peace Corps website. 

Through this program, RPCVs will be able to apply either to the BSN program as a second degree student, or to  the Accelerated Master's in Nursing Pathway (AMNP) program. To learn more about the BSN program, please click on the following link: BSN Program  To learn more about the AMNP program, please click on the following link: AMNP Program

A key component of the Fellows program involves partnering with community organizations to provide opportunities for students to address selected community or health problems through their clinical practicum experiences. Fellows will address two major health issues during these community experiences: reduction of health disparities, and addressing the nursing shortage.

In 2010 the School of Nursing accepted its first RPCV's, Erin Gockel and Katie Rozofsky.  Katie, who was in the AMNP program, completed her Peace Corps service in Surinam in 2008, and Erin, who was in the BSN program, completed her service in Azerbaijan in 2008. The third and fourth fellows were Bryant Laney (Zambia 2008) and Andrea Torre (Zambia 2010). The fifth fellow was admitted to the program in 2013. Her name is Andrea Kayne and she completed her service with the Peace Corps in Paraguay in 2012. The School of Nursing has been privileged to have them as they learned much from their Peace Corps experiences which enriched our nursing programs and will enrich our profession!  We have been and continue to be proud to have all of these fellows as students in the UAB School of Nursing! 

To complete an application, please click on the following link Peace Corps Fellows Application

 

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Faculty member Dr. Lynda Wilson with fellows Bryant Laney and Andrea Torre in 2012