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UA College of Nursing Launches Integrative Nursing Faculty Fellowship

June 15, 2016

The first cohort of integrative nursing faculty fellows from the UA College of Nursing: Sharon Hom, Megan Munson, Mary O’Connell, Ruth Carlson, Connie Miller, Michelle Kahn-John, Deborah Williams, Elizabeth Spinks, Melissa Goldsmith and Kim Blumenfeld. As the first participants in the world’s only Integrative Nursing Faculty Fellowship (INFF), 11 fellows from the University of Arizona College of Nursing have begun charting a new course for nursing education.

“Leaders in nursing education have yet to fully embrace the theory and practices of integrative nursing to improve health-care practice,” said Joan Shaver, PhD, RN, FAAN, dean of the UA College of Nursing. “We need a new approach to nursing education that will better meet what patients want, and we view this fellowship as a game-changer. Our faculty fellows will evolve a new framework that unites traditional views of what constitutes health with broader views of what constitutes well-being, even when disease may be present.”

Funded through the generous support of The David and Lura Lovell Foundation, the INFF program offered by the UA College of Nursing is a first-of-its-kind program for educating and preparing nursing faculty to transform nursing education using the science, theory and practice of integrative nursing.

“Integrative nursing is a whole-person, whole-system approach to health and well-being,” said Mary Koithan, PhD, CNS-BC, FAAN, the Anne Furrow Professor of Integrative Nursing at the UA College of Nursing and director of the INFF program. “During this fellowship, faculty will learn to use and teach the full range of evidence-informed therapeutics to manage symptoms such as pain, fatigue, nausea and insomnia – all commonly seen across health-care settings in which nurses deliver care.”

On May 19, INFF participants enjoyed a welcome with Dr. Jean Watson, founder and director of the Watson Caring Science Institute, who spoke the following day about the connection between caring science and integrative nursing.

The first INFF class, comprised solely of UA College of Nursing faculty members, began the yearlong fellowship on May 20. In 2017, the second cohort will include 30 fellows from nursing schools across the nation. The application will open on February 1.

“Students are opening up to integrative nursing in ways that are exciting and challenging,” said Ruth E. Carlson, MSN, RN, an INFF fellow and clinical instructor who teaches mental health nursing in the Bachelor of Science in Nursing program. “Our patients also are becoming aware of the integrative therapies that are available and expect that these be provided as part of their care. As faculty, it is imperative for us to be there to develop, excite, challenge, teach and model integrative nursing practice for our students.”

The first cohort of INFF participants includes:

  • Kim L. Blumenfeld, MSN, RN, clinical instructor
  • Ruth E. Carlson, MSN, RN, clinical instructor
  • Melissa M. Goldsmith, PhD, RNC, clinical associate professor
  • Sharon Hom, PhD, MS, RN, clinical instructor
  • Michelle Kahn-John, PhD, RN, PMHNP-BC, GNP, assistant professor
  • Pamela Lusk, DNP, RN, PMHNP-BC, FAANP, clinical associate professor
  • Connie S. Miller, DNP, RNC-OB, CNE, CCCE, clinical assistant professor
  • Megan A. Munson, MSN/Ed, RN, clinical instructor
  • Mary F. O’Connell, MA, RN, PHN, clinical instructor
  • Elizabeth A. Spinks, MS, RN, clinical instructor
  • Deborah K. Williams, PhD, MPH, RN, clinical assistant professor

For more information about the Integrative Nursing Faculty Fellowship, please visit:

About the University of Arizona College of Nursing
At the University of Arizona College of Nursing, faculty members envision, engage and innovate in education, research and practice to help people of all ages optimize health in the context of major life transitions, illnesses, injuries, symptoms and disabilities. Established in 1957, the college ranks among the top nursing programs in the United States. For more information, see:

About the University of Arizona Health Sciences
The University of Arizona Health Sciences is the statewide leader in biomedical research and health professions training. The UA Health Sciences includes the UA Colleges of Medicine (Phoenix and Tucson), Nursing, Pharmacy and Mel and Enid Zuckerman College of Public Health, with main campus locations in Tucson and the growing Phoenix Biomedical Campus in downtown Phoenix. From these vantage points, the UA Health Sciences reaches across the state of Arizona and the greater Southwest to provide cutting-edge health education, research, patient care and community outreach services. A major economic engine, the UA Health Sciences employs almost 5,000 people, has nearly 1,000 faculty members and garners more than $126 million in research grants and contracts annually. For more information: