Dean's Message

Advancing innovative education and research

Welcome to our first edition of the College of Nursing Newsletter featuring compelling stories of student engagement in innovative nursing education and interprofessional learning, as well as exciting news about the success of our faculty and students in research and scholarship. These initiatives are impacting health outcomes.

The inspiring celebrations of our 75th anniversary of the College of Nursing honoured the rich legacy and contributions of our esteemed alumni in shaping our college and profession. This amazing legacy is being sustained through our Legacy Awards Fund, which is designed to support the next generation of registered nurses through donations and the sale of our commemorative 75th anniversary necklace and lapel pin.

The new year was launched by celebrating our faculty’s success in achieving four CIHR research grants amounting to more than $3 million. We will also continue to enhance our program excellence, achieve  accreditation for the nurse practitioner program, advance interprofessional education, implement the reconciliation action plan and establish international partnerships.


Nursing researchers successful in receiving CIHR grants

Five College of Nursing faculty members were among several U of M researchers that received over $10.5 million from the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR) in January.

Dr. Kellie Thiessen received a CIHR grant for a total of $810,901 for a project she is working on with Katherine Whitecloud of the Manitoba Assembly of Chiefs, Welcoming the ‘Sacred Spirit’ (child): Connecting Indigenous and Western ‘ways of knowing’ to inform future policy partnerships to optimize maternal child health service delivery initiatives in remote Canadian regions. Thiessen is also the first Canadian midwife to have received a Clinical Scientist designation from the Canadian Child Health Clinical Scientist Program.

Dr. Susan McClement, Dr. Genevieve Thompson and Jamie Penner are members of a team led by researchers at McMaster University that received $1,250,000  for their project, Implementing, evaluating, and scaling up of the strengthening of a palliative approach in long term care.

Click to read more.

Nurse practitioner program approved for five years

The College of Nursing’s nurse practitioner (NP) program was given a resounding vote of confidence when it received proper approval in December for the maximum number of years.

The College of Registered Nurses of Manitoba has approved the graduate level program for five years. 

“It’s fantastic,” said Cheryl Dika, director, curriculum integrity and faculty development. “I think the biggest thing is it shows we meet the standards and are producing competent nurse practitioners. This is also reflected in our current 100 per cent pass rate of our graduates for the Canadian Nurse Practitioner Exam.”

Dika said that the approval process is rigorous and takes about a year of preparations. “We’re very happy because it validates everyone’s hard work with revamping the curriculum,” said Dr. Darlene Pierce, director of the nurse practitioner program.

The two-year graduate level stream is a course-based non-thesis program that is comprised of 45 credit hours and more than 700 clinical hours. The program, which was established in 1998, prepares nurses for advanced practice roles as nurse practitioners in primary care.

The curriculum had remained the same for more than 10 years, Dika said, but with the changes, it now reflects current practices and the expanded scope of nurse practitioners. Nurse practitioners can prescribe additional medications such as narcotics and order additional diagnostics such as MRIs. The revamped curriculum helped the program achieve approval for the maximum number of years.

The NP program is also part of a pilot project with the Canadian Association of Schools of Nursing (CASN), the national accrediting body for nursing education. While the CASN has never accredited nurse practitioner programs before, that is about to change.

The U of M’s NP program volunteered, along with four other programs across the country, to take part in the pilot project that will grant accreditation. Dika said it is essential to be part of the pilot because it allows them the chance to give feedback, fully understand the process and become one of the first programs in the country to be accredited by the CASN.

“It’s nice to get Manitoba on the map,” Dika said.


CNSA conference inspires

On January 22-26, 16 College of Nursing students attended the Canadian Nursing Students’ Association (CNSA) National Conference in Calgary. 

“Over the course of the conference, nursing students had the opportunity to learn more detail about the opioid crisis and addiction, examine what kind of learner and leader styles they hold, interact with many different nurses and hear about their passion for nursing specialties, and experience the excitement of future nurses who want to create change in the health-care system,” said Chris Hayduk, senior stick and president of the Nursing Students’ Association.

Joining Hayduk at the conference were Jess Taaffe, Danielle Goerz, Laryssa Yakimoski, Taylor McKenty, Hannah Mohammed, Karlo Cemania, John Hernandez, Ashley Olsen, Daniela Pilomeno, Jaclyn Bouchard, Kelsey Crotty, Kate Finlayson, Amrit Bharj, Shams Kadhim and Chanelle Boehmer.

Hospital simulation emphasizes teamwork, collaboration

Two labs at the Helen Glass Centre for Nursing were transformed Feb. 2 into a simulated hospital for Interprofessional Education (IPE) Day Shift, an annual event that gives students in health-related fields the opportunity to play the role of both caregiver and patient in a hospital setting.

Click for article, photo gallery and video.

U of M competes in international nursing skills ‘Olympics’

Two students from the College of Nursing competed in the 8th Annual Shanghai International Nursing Skills Competition, marking the U of M’s first time participating in the invitation-only event.

Click to read more.

Beyond Words

If building a research team were like choosing players for dodgeball, it’s fair to say that most of the time, kids would get picked last. After all, with no degrees, limited work experience and hardly any published works, how could a child ever hope to get in the game? And why would they even want to? For Roberta Woodgate, bringing children and youth onto her team is a win for everyone involved.

Click to read article in RadyUM magazine.

Celebrating 75 years

During the 2018 Homecoming weekend, the College of Nursing celebrated its 75th anniversary at a gala dinner on the Fort Garry campus. About 75 alumni and guests also gathered at the Helen Glass Centre for Nursing for a tour and reception.

Click to read more in the Winter 2018 issue of RadyUM magazine.

Click to view photos from the events.

Trina Arnold

Trina Arnold joined the faculty in August 2018 and in January moved to the position of director of undergraduate nursing programs. She has a bachelor degree in nursing and a master’s degree in public health, both from the U of M. Her specialty areas are women’s health, community and population health and global public health.

Lisa Banman

Lisa Banman joined the faculty as an instructor in August 2018. She graduated from U of M with a bachelor of nursing in 2000 and worked as a nurse at St. Boniface Hospital until 2018, primarily in the cardiac sciences program. Last year she received her master’s degree in nursing from the U of M. She currently teaches several health and illness courses, facilitates in the simulation lab, and supervises senior practicum students.

Fleur McEvoy

Fleur McEvoy joined the faculty as an instructor in the new Bachelor of Midwifery program. She completed a bachelor of nursing with the U of M and a bachelor of science (honours) in midwifery at the University of Surrey, England. She is currently completing a master’s degree in the U of M’s nurse practitioner program. McEvoy has worked as a midwife for 15 years in Nunavut and Manitoba, most recently in administration at Women’s Health Clinic. 

Darlene Pierce

Dr. Darlene Pierce joined the faculty in August 2018 as program director of the nurse practitioner (NP) program. Her career includes working as a regional emergency NP at Seven Oaks Hospital, family NP at Access Transcona and emergency and intensive care nursing in Nanaimo, B.C. She was also an assistant professor at Auburn University School of Nursing in Alabama. 

Vladan Protudjer 

Vladan Protudjer joined the faculty as an instructor on Dec. 1, 2018. His clinical practice started in medical/surgical nursing but he also worked in the areas of geriatrics, palliative care, telemetry and post-acute neurosurgery. He earned his bachelor of nursing degree from the U of M and his master’s degree in medical education from Karolinska Institute in Stockholm, Sweden. 

Sarah Rehill

Sarah Rehill recently joined the faculty as an administrative services assistant. Although she came to Nursing as an external hire, she brings over five years of U of M experience. She previously worked at the front reception desk of 260 Brodie, when it was the Dean’s Office for the Faculty of Medicine. She also worked closely with the students in Undergraduate Medical Education before accepting a position in Extended Degree Studies.

Susan Wintoniw

Susan Wintoniw is an experienced midwife and nurse practitioner who recently joined the College of Nursing as an instructor for the midwifery program. She has a bachelor and master’s degree in nursing from the U of M and an associated science degree from the National College of Midwifery. She brings 15 years of clinical experience ranging from emergency medicine, community health, primary care, maternal/child health and addictions medicine.

Congratulations to the College of Nursing and MCNHR members on several research and scholarly accomplishments that have been reported to us over the past three months.

Click to read.

Legal Cannabis: Determining Fitness to Work and Fitness to Learn

February 26, 2019

Part of the 2018/2019 Dean's Lecture Series. This session is a great opportunity to get answers to your latest questions. Join an expert panel that includes College of Nursing associate professor Lynda Balneaves, to continue to refine your organization’s approach to this evolving reality.

Click for details.


Yes! This is Advanced Practice Nursing: Sex, Drugs and the Role of the APN

March 7, 2019

The 9th Annual Advanced Practice Nursing Conference

Click for details.

Outdated health systems: The case for major disruption

March 18, 2019
6:30 p.m. – 8:00 p.m. | Canadian Museum for Human Rights 

Dr. Amanda Kenny, one of Australia’s leading health service researchers, will argue that major disruption is needed to ensure health systems and health services meet contemporary need. For more information on the lecture, read our UM Today interview with  Dr. Kenny.

Click for details.

Graduate Student Poster Competition

March 19, 2019
8:00 a.m. – 9:30 a.m. | Canadian Museum for Human Rights

The Graduate Student Research Poster Competition has been established to provide a forum to showcase the graduate student research and scholarship that has been recently completed or that is in progress.

Click for details.

Research Workshop

Internationalizing Your Research: From Partnerships to Research Entrepreneur

March 20, 2019
1:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. | Canadian Museum for Human Rights


Amanda Kenny, Violet Marshman Professor of Rural Health, La Trobe University
Christina West, Assistant Professor, College of Nursing, University of Manitoba

Click for details.