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University of South Florida’s Johnson-Mallard Named Robert Wood Johnson Foundation ‘Nurse Faculty Scholar’


NEWS RELEASE                                                     Contact: Gretchen Wright or Johanna Diaz
September 23, 2009                                                                   202/371-1999
University of South Florida’s Johnson-Mallard Named
Robert Wood Johnson Foundation ‘Nurse Faculty Scholar’
Sexual Health Researcher Working with Young Adults is Selected for Prestigious
Program to Advance Careers of Nation’s Most Promising Junior Nurse Faculty
Tampa, F.L.—Versie Johnson-Mallard, Ph.D., ARNP., an Asistant Professor at the College of Nursing at the University of South Florida, has won a competitive grant from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF) to study strategies to prevent the spread of viral sexually transmitted infections (STIs) among college students and young adults. Johnson-Mallard is one of just 15 nurse educators from around the country to receive the three-year $350,000 “Nurse Faculty Scholar” award this year. It is given to junior faculty who show outstanding promise as future leaders in academic nursing. The grant period begins this month.
“The generous support from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation will enable me to test an innovative web-based sexual health education intervention and hopefully slow the spread of viral sexually transmitted infections on college campuses,” Johnson-Mallard said.
In her research, Johnson-Mallard will develop a PowerPoint educational intervention plus electronic card CDC STI prevention messaging presentation on the Human Papillomavirus, Herpes Simplex Virus (HSV), Hepatitis B (HepB), and Human Immune Deficiency Virus (HIV). This intervention will be delivered in an innovative web messaging format. Follow-up surveys will determine whether students exposed to the innovative format, are more knowledgeable about the diseases, had a better understanding of the risks associated, and were more likely to take prevention measures such as vaccinations, abstinence and condom use.
Ultimately, she hopes to use her findings to develop a standard electronic prevention-education protocol for use on college campuses.
Cecile Lengacher, M.S.N., Ph.D., a Professor at the College of Nursing at the University of South Florida, and Anna Giuliano, Ph.D., a researcher at the H. Lee Moffitt Cancer Center and Research Institute, will serve as her mentors.
“Instead of having to stand in front of a poster on campus or read a brochure in a doctor’s office, this project will enable college students to learn about viral sexually transmitted infections in private settings, through an electronic format,” Lengacher said. “This will hopefully give them more time to study the materials and more knowledge about the diseases, which will hopefully lead to lower rates of infection.”
The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation’s“Nurse Faculty Scholar” award aims to strengthen the academic productivity and overall excellence of nursing schools by developing the next generation of national leaders in academic nursing.
Supporting junior nurse faculty will help curb a severe shortage of nurse educators that threatens to undermine the health and health care of all Americans. Many nursing schools lack the resources needed to hire and support enough faculty to train the next generation of nurses. As a result, nursing schools are turning away thousands of qualified applicants—rejecting the very people who can help reverse a serious looming nurse shortage. As the supply of nurses shrinks and the demand for their services grows, patient care will suffer.
The Foundation’s “Nurse Faculty Scholars” program aims to curb the effects of the nursing shortage by helping more junior faculty succeed in, and commit to, academic careers. The program provides talented junior faculty with salary and research support as well as the chance to participate in institutional and national mentoring activities, leadership training, and networking events with colleagues in nursing and other fields, while continuing to teach and provide institutional, professional and community service in their universities.
The program will also enhance the stature of the scholars’ academic institutions, which will benefit fellow nurse educators seeking professional development opportunities.
To receive the award, scholars must be registered nurses who have completed a research doctorate in nursing or a related discipline and who have held a tenure-eligible faculty position at an accredited nursing school for at least two and no more than five years.
The program is funded by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and administered through the Johns Hopkins University School of Nursing. It is directed by Jacquelyn Campbell, Ph.D., R.N., F.A.A.N., who is the Anna D. Wolf chair and professor at the Johns Hopkins University School of Nursing.
To learn more about the program, visit
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The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation focuses on the pressing health and health care issues facing our country. As the nation’s largest philanthropy devoted exclusively to improving the health and health care of all Americans, we work with a diverse group of organizations and individuals to identify solutions and achieve comprehensive, meaningful and timely change. For more than 35 years we’ve brought experience, commitment and a rigorous, balanced approach to the problems that affect the health and health care of those we serve. When it comes to helping Americans lead healthier lives and get the care they need, we expect to make a difference in your lifetime.