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Kamal Eldeirawi, Ph.D., R.N. Selected as a 2013 Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Nurse Faculty Scholar

NEWS  RELEASE                                                                                                                          Contact: Gretchen Wright September 11, 2013                                                                                                                                      202/371-1999

                                                    University of Illinois at Chicago College of Nursing’s Eldeirawi                                               Named a 2013 Robert Wood Johnson Foundation ‘Nurse Faculty Scholar’

                                                             Asthma Researcher Selected for Prestigious Program that                                                                    Advances Careers of Talented Junior Nurse Faculty

Kamal Eldeirawi, PhD, RN, an assistant professor at the University of Illinois at Chicago College of Nursing, is one of just 12 nursing educators from across the United States to win a highly competitive grant from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF) Nurse Faculty Scholars program this year. Eldeirawi will receive a three-year, $350,000 award to promote his academic career and support his research. The Nurse Faculty Scholar award is given to junior faculty who show outstanding promise as future leaders in academic nursing.

“This award from Robert Wood Johnson Foundation provides a wonderful opportunity to advance our understanding of how neighborhood physical and social environments contribute to the risk of asthma in Mexican American children,” Eldeirawi said.   For his research project, Eldeirawi will extend his research on individual risk factors of asthma to consider the larger context of the neighborhood environments. He plans to link previously collected individual data on more than 2,000 Mexican American children from Chicago with neighborhood data aggregated from multiple sources. He will examine the independent associations of neighborhood social and physical environments with the risk of asthma and asthma morbidity and determine whether these relationships are explained or modified by individual-level characteristics such as immigration status or acculturation. His research utilizing the powerful tool of migration studies will provide an unprecedented opportunity to enhance understanding of risk factors for asthma in this unique immigrant population and inform future research.

Eldeirawi’s research study also has implications for identifying causes of asthma and defining effective multi-layered, culturally appropriate interventions as well as policies to prevent asthma and reduce asthma-related disparities.

The RWJF Nurse Faculty Scholars program is strengthening the academic productivity and overall excellence of nursing schools by developing the next generation of leaders in academic nursing. Dr. Eldeirawi is part of the program’s sixth cohort. Supporting junior nurse faculty will help curb a shortage of nurse educators that could undermine the health and health care of all Americans. The Affordable Care Act is vastly increasing the number of people who can access health care in the U.S. As the number of patients increases, there will be greater demand for skilled nurses as well as faculty to educate them.

Currently, many schools of nursing are turning away qualified applicants because they do not have the faculty to teach them. The RWJF Nurse Faculty Scholars program is helping more junior faculty succeed in, and commit to, academic careers. The program also enhances 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 Nurse Faculty Scholars program also supports the Future of Nursing: Campaign for Action, which is engaging nurses and nurse champions in a nationwide effort to improve health care by implementing recommendations from the groundbreaking Institute of Medicine report, The Future of Nursing: Leading Change, Advancing Health. The Campaign for Action is backed by RWJF and AARP, and has Action Coalitions working in all 50 states and the District of Columbia.  

The Nurse Faculty Scholars 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, PhD, RN, FAAN, 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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About the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation 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 health and health care, the Foundation works with a diverse group of organizations and individuals to identify solutions and achieve comprehensive, measurable, and timely change. For more than 40 years the Foundation has brought experience, commitment, and a rigorous, balanced approach to the problems that affect the health and health care of those it serves. When it comes to helping Americans lead healthier lives and get the care they need, the Foundation expects to make a difference in your lifetime. For more information, visit Follow the Foundation on Twitter at or on Facebook at