If you work in the field of rheumatology, you know the importance of mentoring students who show interest in the field. With the many specialty options presented to healthcare students, it is of vital importance to open the door to rheumatology.
ARHP Graduate Student Awards open this door by encouraging the interest of non-physician graduate students in the field of rheumatology, giving these students a glimpse into the practice of a rheumatology health professional.
“I was so excited and proud when I found out I was selected as one of the 2007 ARHP Graduate Student award recipients,” says Terri White, RN, MS, FNP-C. “After hearing this wonderful news, my first thoughts were of gratitude to my mentor, Gail Davis.”
As a mentor, Gail C. Davis, RN, EdD, has been the guiding force of White’s doctoral studies and dissertation research. “When I first began the PhD program, Dr. Davis encouraged me to join the ARHP as a student,” explains White. “During my PhD studies, I have been privileged to be on one of her two nursing research teams—studying osteoporosis and chronic pain related to arthritis in older adults. The research skills I have learned from Dr. Davis are invaluable and a major reason for my success in the doctoral program.”
In 2004, Dr. Davis started taking White the ACR/ARHP Annual Scientific Meetings. At these meetings, White’s mentor introduced her to many health professionals and included her in presentations—all of which guided White in her studies.
“Terri is a most deserving student for the ARHP Graduate Student Award,” says Dr. Davis, a professor of nursing at Texas Women’s University in Denton and a member of the TR editorial board. “Her scholarly performance throughout her doctoral program has been outstanding, and her dissertation work with osteoporosis and rural-dwelling older adults represents such a nice contribution to the field of rheumatology and to the lives of older individuals.”
For her dissertation, White decided to explore different methods of teaching bone health and encouraging healthy bone behaviors in rural-dwelling older adults. Her research was completed in late October last year and she is hopeful that she will be able to present her findings at the 2008 ACR/ARHP Annual Scientific Meeting in San Francisco.
“When working as a family nurse practitioner in a rural health clinic, I became acutely aware of the disparity of knowledge about osteoporosis and healthy bone behaviors in rural dwelling older adults. My dissertation research is based upon Dr. Davis’ previous studies concerning osteoporosis and goal attainment scaling,” says White.