Nurses—Making a Difference in Global Health

Nurse Stories:  Combat HIV, AIDS, Malaria and all communicable and non-communicable diseases

Nursing Organizations Partnering to Strengthen Nursing Education Programs in India

Building and strengthening nursing education programs is paramount in preventing global illnesses and managing chronic diseases. The United States is fortunate to have a plethora of nursing programs, yet there are not enough to eradicate the nursing shortage. Nurse executives are well aware that high quality nursing schools are precursors to competent, professional nurses practicing with high standards of care. Therefore, nurse executives and nursing deans supported by national funding are partnering to increase the number of professional nurses. An example of this initiative is the VA Nurse Academy in which practice nurses partner with academic faculty to increase the enrollment of nursing students. Not only are nurses in practice settings and nursing schools partnering in this effort, but also nurses within nursing organizations, such as Sigma Theta Tau International Honor Society of Nursing who are partnering with nursing schools in other countries to help produce more professional nurses. I am fortunate to be a part of such an organization, Beta Beta Chapter of Texas Woman’s University College of Nursing.

Nursing Research Workshop Breakout Session in Salokaya College of Nursing in Delhi.

We, along with other chapters, are partnering with nursing schools in India to help strengthen their nursing programs through teaching and financial support. Spear-headed by the Delta Theta Chapter of University of Texas of Arlington, we helped to build an International Council Nurses Mobile Library for the nursing students and faculty at the Rebekah Ann Naylor School of Nursing (RANSON) in Bangalore and provided computer equipment to augment their ability to access internet resources. Additionally, we provided $10,000 along with 4 other Sigma Theta Tau chapters for the building of a hostel for the RANSON in Bangalore, India. This construction will provide additional housing for nursing students. Since 1999, Beta Beta Chapter has partnered with other Sigma Theta Tau chapters in purchasing uniforms for the RANSON graduating nurses.

Christian Medical College School of Nursing Vellore, India.

Last year, as president of Beta Beta Chapter, I was privileged to travel to India as one of three Sigma Theta Tau chapter presidents to visit three nursing schools— Rebekah Ann Naylor School of Nursing (RANSON) in Bangalore, India; Christian Medical College (CMC) in Vellore, India; and Salokaya College of Nursing (SCN) in Delhi, India. In two of them (RANSON and SCN), we taught nursing students, practicing nurses, and faculty the nursing research process and evidence-base practice in a one-day Nursing Research Workshop. This workshop included lectures and breakout sessions to facilitate the nurses in developing mini proposals which consisted of the following components: identifying nursing research problems, developing problem statements, hypotheses based on theoretical/conceptual frameworks, methodologies for conducting the research. One of the groups that I facilitated was interested in the effects of cardiac rehabilitation in reducing mortality in patients with a recent myocardial infarction. Another group used Jean Watson’s Theory of Caring as a framework to investigate how to increase patient and family satisfaction in labor and delivery. This activity was a most gratifying experience for me as I observed the excitement and enthusiasm of these nurses engaging in the nursing research process.

Rebekah Ann Naylor School of Nursing Graduation Ceremony in Bangalore, India.

Additionally, we participated in the 10th graduation ceremony of the RANSON in Bangalore, India. This graduating ceremony was absolutely stunning as I stood in awe watching the graduate candidates adorned in their beautiful white sari uniforms and nursing caps promenade down the jasmine laced aisle. As I stepped to the podium to address these bright new graduates on behalf of my chapter, I was humbled and yet had a solemn sense of pride knowing that in part, we had contributed to yet another class who had matriculated through the program—a program that produces professional nurses who will positively impact the health and well-being of the peoples of India.

Contact Information:

Verdell Marsh, Ph.D., RN
President, Beta Beta Chapter

5500 Southwestern Medical Ave.
Dallas, TX 75235