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School of Nursing Term Chairs
January 27, 2009, Volume 55, No. 19

Dr. Afaf I. Meleis, Margaret Bond Simon Dean of Nursing, has announced the appointments of three faculty to term chairs effective July 1, 2008. “The appointment to a term chair is a high honor in the University and is an acknowledgement of a high level of productivity of a faculty member, ” she said.


Dr. Sarah Hope Kagan, professor of gerontological nursing-clinician educator, has been appointed as the Ralston House Endowed Term Professor in Gerontological Nursing. The Ralston House Endowed Term Chair was founded in 1995 by a gift from The Ralston House to support Gerontological Nursing. “Dr. Kagan is passionate about advancing the care of elders through her teaching and research, and her appointment to the chair is in recognition to her devotion to this growing population.” She is an expert in the field of gerontology and oncology, and has been a visiting scholar at numerous national and international universities. Her clinical scholarship centers on the impact of head and neck cancer on the lives of the vulnerable elderly adults, and on the most effective models of care to decrease their suffering and enhance their wellbeing. An expert in the field of gerontology and oncology, Dr. Kagan is an accomplished clinician who captures the synthesis between practice and research through her appointment as Senior Clinical Nurse Specialist in the Abramson Cancer Center. Dr. Kagan’s superb teaching skills have been recognized with the Christian R. and Mary F. Lindback Award for Distinguished Teaching, the School of Nursing Teaching Award and by her designation as a Master Teacher by the Association for Gerontology in Higher Education. She is an outstanding mentor and receives comments about her coaching and role modeling that are consistently couched in accolades.


Dr. Martha A. Q. Curley, associate professor of nursing, has been appointed as the Killebrew-Censits Endowed Term Associate Professor.  The Killebrew-Censits Term Chair was established in 1989 by a gift from Norma Killebrew, CW’61, and Richard Censits, W’58, to support a faculty member who makes outstanding contributions to education. Dr. Curley has contributed greatly to the next generation of critical care pediatric nurses. Her vast repertoire of invited lectures attests to her extraordinary ability to present to a range of audiences. Her award-winning textbook Critical Care Nursing of Infants and Children, is the most widely used in the field for master’s level education and PICU nurses. Nearly all of the extant literature regarding pulmonary complications in medically ventilated patients is Dr. Curley’s or is derived from her work. Dr. Curley excels in undergraduate as well as graduate student teaching, she carries teaching and mentoring of students beyond the classroom and clinical setting and has worked with numerous undergraduate students on research proposals and manuscripts. Although Dr. Curley’s research trajectory alone is impressive, her contributions to the discipline are more broad reaching. One of Dr. Curley’s most extraordinary accomplishments was to lead a team of experts in developing the Synergy Model for Critical Care for the American Association of Critical-Care Nurses. Judged on the impact of this model, Dr. Curley’s creativity and vision have pushed the adoption of “Synergy” for certification exams, for curriculum in Schools of Nursing, and for designating “Beacon” award (magnet-like) critical care units. She has truly revolutionized a model for critical care delivery in the United States for children and adults. 


Dr. Kathleen McCauley, associate dean for academic programs and associate professor of cardiovascular nursing-clinician educator, has been appointed as the Class of 1965 25th Reunion Endowed Term Associate Professor. The Class of 1965 Chair is one of five created by the Class in 1990. This unprecedented 25th Reunion class gift funded a chair for each of the four undergraduate Schools and one in honor of the College for Women. Dr. McCauley is uniquely qualified for appointment to the Chair.  As Associate Dean for Academic Programs, she is responsible for overseeing the educational mission of the School. “She has been a driving force in integrating evidence based nursing practice, evaluating content gaps and redundancies and in modifying the curriculum to address societal trends, regulatory, school and university priorities and student and faculty feedback.  Her teaching expertise flows directly from her proficiency in the areas of practice, professionalism in nursing, research and its translation to practice, in-depth knowledge of students, their learning needs and preferences, and national trends in nursing education.” For the past 15 years, she has directed the capstone undergraduate clinical course NURS370/371, Advanced Clinical Practicum in Nursing that addresses advanced specialty knowledge, clinical decision making, role transition and professional issues to position our graduates to excel in entry level positions across the continuum of health care. Throughout her practice career as Clinical Nurse Specialist in the department of cardiovascular nursing at HUP, Dr. McCauley has focused on the needs and management of patients with and at risk for heart disease.




Almanac - January 27, 2009, Volume 55, No. 19