Students honored for Scholarly Project excellence

May 23, 2022

DNP students Courtney Kenefick and Veronica Callaghan

Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) students Courtney Kenefick, BSN, RN, CPN, and Veronica Callaghan, BSN, RN, were named recipients of the Sandra R. Edwardson Award for Excellence in Post-Baccalaureate DNP Scholarly Project. The award, named for the school’s first DNP program director, is awarded to students who demonstrate leadership in an area of nursing practice and whose DNP project exemplifies the ideals of DNP scholarship.

Kenefick’s DNP Scholarly Project was Improving Hair and Scalp Maintenance in Racially Diverse Pediatric Patients. She is a recent graduate of the DNP program in the pediatric clinical nurse specialist specialty.

“Short-term outcomes demonstrate the impact of Ms. Kenefick’s project. Nurses showed a significant increase in their knowledge of and ability for performing hair care for this patient population,” wrote Associate Professor Casey Hooke, PhD, APRN, PCNS-BC, FAAN, in her nomination letter. “I believe Courtney Kenefick’s project reflects how small focused clinical changes in care can significantly change the cultural competence of nursing care.”

Callaghan’s DNP Scholarly Project was A Quality Improvement Project: Surveying Employees' Perceptions of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Climate at a Large Pacific Northwest Healthcare System: A Path Forward. She is a recent graduate of the DNP program in health innovation and leadership.

“She possesses a strong grasp of health care leadership, innovative practices and advancing these practices in complex environments,” wrote Clinical Professor Judy Pechacek, DNP, RN, CENP, in her nomination letter. “She is a scholar, leader and health care professional making a substantive difference in her community and in the lives of veterans across the nation.”

The DNP Scholarly Project represents a synthesis of a student’s work in the DNP program by addressing a complex practice or clinical problem within the student’s field of expertise. Students propose an evidence-based change to address that problem for a significant population, use doctoral-level leadership skills to implement and evaluate the efficacy of the practice change, and evaluate the outcomes of the change.

Media Contacts

Steve Rudolph
School of Nursing