August 17, 2007
CONTACT: Gordon Ovenshine:
Association selects SRU professor as a national fellow
SLIPPERY ROCK, Pa. - Ramona Nelson, Slippery Rock University professor of nursing, has been named a fellow in the Academy of Nursing Education by the National League for Nursing. In selecting Nelson, the 115-year-old professional association cited her "sustained and significant contribution to nursing education."
Nelson, a pioneer in the use of technology in nursing education, will be inducted during the League's Sept. 26-29 summit in Phoenix. She joins the ranks of other fellows from New York University, the University of North Carolina and the University of Cincinnati.
The League, headquartered in New York City, champions the pursuit of excellence in nursing education. The voice of nursing education, it has 23,000 individual and 1,100 institutional members.
"I am pleased to be honored by my peers," said Nelson, who also serves as SRU's nursing department chair. "I am proud of our department and believe we have impacted healthcare by preparing highly skilled nurses who are prepared to implement the latest developments in the field."
Nelson, a professor at SRU since 1994, was a nursing informatics innovator. Nursing informatics combines concepts from computer, information and nursing science to create innovative approaches to the delivery of healthcare education.
She developed one of the first courses in nursing informatics at the undergraduate level, which began as an elective at the University of Pittsburgh in 1988 and continues today as a required course. As Web-based distance education began to evolve, Nelson took a leadership role in developing and promoting best practices in online learning.
"She recognized the importance of technology at a time when computers in clinical and educational settings were in their infancy," said Robert Smith, president of the University.
Nelson, who has a master's of nursing and Ph.D. in higher education from the University of Pittsburgh, began her own informatics studies in 1988 by earning a master's degree in information science. She then pursued post-doctoral work in nursing informatics at the University of Utah. With this solid foundation, Nelson then began a tireless campaign to educate others about the importance of informatics in education and service.
She has presented at national and international conferences, including the Rutgers International Computer Conference and the International Medical Informatics Conference. She also published a practical book "Introduction to Computers for Health Care Professionals," now in its fourth edition, and a comprehensive book "Healthcare Informatics: An Interdisciplinary Approach." In addition to being used at SRU, this book has been adopted by the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, University of South Florida and Duke University Medical Center, among others.
Nelson received bachelor's degree in nursing from Duquesne University. Her areas of research include nursing and consumer informatics, distance education and information literacy. At SRU, she teaches informatics and school nursing courses.
Slippery Rock University is Pennsylvania's premier public residential university. Slippery Rock University provides students with a comprehensive learning experience that intentionally combines academic instruction with enhanced educational and learning opportunities that make a positive difference in their lives.