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News from Quinnipiac University School of Health Sciences | spring 2011 From the Dean

Nurses can advance with new DNP Donna Montesi of Cheshire, Conn., graduated from Quinnipiac’s nursing master’s program in 2002, but is eager to continue her education. She was thrilled to learn that Quinnipiac University is set to offer a doctor of nursing practice degree beginning in Fall 2011.

Health science fields are growing fast to meet the medical needs of our communities. It’s not surprising Quinnipiac’s health sciences programs are quickly changing as well. The University’s goal is to make its programs even stronger to prepare our graduates for the demands they will face once they enter their respective fields. To that end, we are welcoming a new School of Nursing on July 1. Jean Lange, formerly a professor at Fairfield University, has been selected to be the school’s dean. The School of Nursing will have the independence to grow and evolve as nurses continue to play an increasingly important role in the health care team, and in particular in primary care medicine. The nursing administration will work closely with the School of Health Sciences and the Quinnipiac School of Medicine, headed by Dr. Bruce Koeppen, dean. His team now includes Dr. Anthony Ardolino, senior associate dean for academic and student affairs, David C. Gillon, senior associate dean for administration and finance, and Stephen Wikel, chair of the Department of Basic Medical Science and senior associate dean for research. Another example of growth is the establishment of the Department of Athletic Training/Sports Medicine, which was previously a program in the physical therapy department. To encourage collaborative teaching, the School of Health Sciences held a faculty development day in January with speaker Charlotte Royeen, a health sciences dean at Saint Louis University and an expert in interprofessional education. For the first time, the School of Health Sciences hosted an interdisciplinary poster session on May 6. Students showcased their work, and the event provided an opportunity to highlight the common threads that connect different areas of the health sciences. People say change is good. Seeing the exciting direction we are heading in science and medicine, I would say change is great.

“It’s a way to make me more marketable in my current practice,” said Montesi, who works as an adult nurse practitioner at West Haven Medical Group. She would like to teach one day, and an advanced degree would give her that opportunity. To better prepare nurses to excel in today’s increasingly challenging health care environment, the current two-year nurse practitioner master’s level program will transition to a three-year, clinical doctorate program. The DNP program will offer five tracks, including two post-master’s degree tracks. The program will be part of the new School of Nursing, which the University will formally establish on July 1. Jean Lange of Woodbridge, Conn., will head the school as dean.

Donna Montesi MSN ’02, working with a fellow nurse, is excited to see Quinnipiac offer a doctor of nursing practice.

“Primary health care has become more complex, and primary care clinicians now are responsible for so much more than what was required 20 years ago,” said Lynn Price, chair of the nursing department. The pressure to increase access to health care for more people has also placed more responsibilities on nurses and other health professionals, as has the decline in the numbers of practicing primary care physicians, she said. The DNP would offer nurses an opportunity for career advancement, preparation to serve as muchneeded clinical faculty and a higher salary. Nurses with DNP degrees earn nearly $7,700 more than master’sprepared nurse practitioners, according to a 2009 survey by ADVANCE for Nurse Practitioners magazine. Unlike doctorate programs that focus on original research, the DNP is a clinical degree. The program provides more intensive education in areas such as diagnostic testing and health assessments, and allows postmaster’s students the opportunity to deepen their existing clinical practice. “We’ve designed this program to give students additional time to gain fluency in the depth and breadth of care they must provide,” Price explained. Nurses with a bachelor’s degree may choose from three DNP tracks: adult practice, family practice or women’s health. Quinnipiac is the only University in the state to offer a women’s health track. Graduates are eligible for national certification as nurse practitioners in their specialty area. Advanced practice registered nurses with master’s degrees may select either the “care of the individual” track, which offers advanced clinical education to deepen or broaden an existing APRN practice, or the “care of populations” track, which prepares graduates for positions that focus on health care for populations working within systems at the local, regional, national or global level. Other health fields, such as physical therapy and pharmacology, now expect professionals to earn a doctorate degree. “Nursing also needs to be competitive with other health professions,” Montesi explains. For more information on the doctor of nursing practice, visit

Edward R. O’Connor Dean, School of Health Sciences

In the community Each SHS program organizes service events to encourage healthy living and support underserved populations. o In April, the Physical Therapy Club celebrated its 30th year hosting its “Special Athletics” event. Students invite members of the special needs community to campus for activities and games. o The Physician Assistant Student Society sponsored its 13th annual 5K Road Race and Cow Chip Bingo in April. o Four faculty members accompanied 15 physical therapy and occupational therapy students to León, Nicaragua, in January to volunteer in areas with limited health care.

Promoting literacy for better health In March, 50 physician assistant students read to children as part of the second annual Health and Literacy Fair at the Hospital of Saint Raphael in New Haven. More than 270 people from the hospital and the community attended the event, which coincides with Read Across America week and Dr. Seuss’s birthday. At the Health and Literacy Fair, PA students set up hands-on activity stations on health issues, such as healthy eating, exercise and hand-washing. Literacy helps people be better prepared to make decisions about their health, from evaluating information for credibility and quality to reading and assessing medication labels, said PA student Todd Bruss. “These young children will someday be patients faced with complex information and treatment decisions,” he said.

Physician assistant student Sarah Blank, right, reads to a child at the Health and Literacy Fair at the Hospital of Saint Raphael.

News Briefs Fulbright Specialist grant awarded

Finding clues to curb obesity Despite the colorful cartoon character on the cereal box touting that it’s chock-full of vitamin D, the third-grade students at Pond Hill School in Wallingford, Conn., knew it was not a healthy choice.

Juan garbalosa, clinical associate professor of physical therapy, received a prestigious Fulbright Specialist Grant. In June, he will spend six weeks researching and training staff in a biomechanics lab at the University of Hyago near Kobe, Japan. He will investigate the intersegmental dynamics and coordination of the foot joints in individuals with and without overuse injuries of the lower leg and foot.

“Leave it,” exclaimed one third-grader to occupational therapy graduate student Kate LeFebvre. She was one of four OT students teaching the Nutrition Detectives™ program.

Professional accolades Alicia giaimo ’97, mHS ’07, clinical assistant professor of diagnostic imaging, received the Gail Pitkin Memorial Lecturer Award for her presentation, “New Mammography Guidelines,” at the annual conference of the Connecticut Society of Radiological Technologists in Waterbury in October 2010. In addition, Giaimo was elected a senior board member for 2011. Bill Hennessy, mHS ’99, clinical associate professor and director of the diagnostic imaging program, received the John Archer Memorial Award at the October conference. Tara glennon ’85, professor of occupational therapy, and Tracy Van oss, clinical assistant professor of occupational therapy, received the Jeannette Bair Writer’s Award at the AOTA national conference in April for their recent publication on professionalism.

Nursing programs awarded holistic certification Quinnipiac’s nursing programs have received an endorsement from the American Holistic Nurses’ Certification Corporation. The distinction puts Quinnipiac in an elite group of just three schools that have received this endorsement for both graduate and undergraduate nursing programs. The mission and philosophy of the nursing programs follow a holistic model that encourages students to think of the “mind, spirit and body components for each person,” said mary Helming, associate professor of nursing. Professor Cindy Barrere and Helming are certified by the American Holistic Nurses’ Association.

The children have become nutrition detectives, thanks to a $60,287 grant from Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield Martha Sanders reviews the ingredients listed on a cereal box with a student. Foundation. The grant funds the implementation of the nutrition program and the ABC for Fitness™ program as part of a research study to determine the effectiveness of these two programs. Dr. David Katz, founder of the Yale Prevention Research Center, created the innovative programs with his wife, Dr. Catherine Katz. On this afternoon, the children were smacking sticky notes with the words “keep it” or “leave it” on pasta, crackers, granola bars and other foods based on clues in nutritional labels. It wasn’t just that sugar was the second item on the cereal box ingredients list, which meant the box had a lot of it, one child explained. The list also was very long. “In a long list, they can sneak things inside,” said LeFebvre. Small heads bobbed up and down in agreement. This spring, Martha Sanders, associate professor of occupational therapy, will find out how much children gain from the programs. Sanders is working with four graduate OT students—LeFebvre, Chelsea Benard, Katherine Whitehouse and Dina DeSanctis—to survey 100 third-graders in Hamden and 100 in Wallingford. “Their understanding of healthy and unhealthy has been pretty black and white. Now they are looking at labels to determine the healthier choice,” said Leigh Grande, a third-grade Pond Hill teacher. Her father, Vin Jankowski ’68, is a QU alumnus. She plans to incorporate the programs and what the QU group has shared. “What they are showing me now will be passed on for many years to come,” Grande said. Instilling good nutritional habits at a young age is critical in preventing obesity and related problems that could overwhelm the health care system in the future, Quinnipiac students say. “We can help a whole generation,” said Benard, who has studied childhood obesity. The ABC for Fitness™ program shows teachers how to increase activity throughout the day and incorporates hourly 5- or 10-minute activity bursts based on the curriculum, such as moving like a bear or an insect during a science lesson. Teachers have found that these focused activities are a good way for students to release pent-up energy after a long stretch at their desks. Every week, two occupational therapy and two physical therapy graduate students, led by Nancy Bagatell and Michelle Broggi, visit the Pond Hill classes to provide ideas and support for the teachers. SHS nursing students, led by Mary Helming, as well as physician assistant students also joined the initiative to provide training in the two programs for all third-grade classrooms in Wallingford. Everyone involved has been impressed with the programs, Sanders said. “We are looking for lifestyle changes, thus both aspects of the grant are important,” Sanders said.

Educational partnership celebrated A Diagnostic Imaging Conference was held for the first time on the North Haven Campus in November. The event highlighted Quinnipiac’s transformative educational partnership with Toshiba America Medical Systems, Inc. The Department of Diagnostic Imaging and the Bioanthropology Research Institute at Quinnipiac offered a series of mini-workshops, and Professor gerald Conlogue, mHS ’77 and Professor Emeritus Ronald Beckett presented.

SHS touts medical careers

Sigma Theta Tau Research Day held

health care equipment.

In March, Quinnipiac hosted for the first time the annual Sigma Theta Tau International Connecticut Collaborative Research Day, which drew 160 attendees from the state’s seven chapters. Quinnipiac’s chapter, Tau Rho, is the youngest chapter in the state. Margaret Flinter, clinical director and senior vice president of the Community Health Centers Inc., gave the keynote address for the conference, which focused on nursing and primary care.

“The goal is to expose students from diverse and underrepresented populations to careers in health care,” said Cindy Lord, MHS ’97, PA program director. Quinnipiac plans to make Medical Career Pathway Day an annual event.

New leadership roles Cynthia Lord, mHS ’97, clinical associate professor and director of the physician assistant program, is serving on the search task force for the new American Academy of Physician Assistants executive vice president and chief executive officer. Dean Ed o’Connor is serving a three-year term on the Board of Governors of MidState Medical Center of Meriden. Susan Daddio of North Haven has joined Quinnipiac as a development officer. She is working closely with the School of Health Sciences and will be sharing news about the school with donors, alumni, parents and community members.

Leslie White, adjunct professor (center), shows students from Stratford’s Frank Scott Bunnell High School the features of a patient simulator during Medical Career Pathway Day at Quinnipiac in December. About 40 students got a glimpse into the world of health sciences rotating through “mini-college” presentations featuring the school’s academic programs and its high-tech,

PT alumni reconnect Alumni, faculty and students mingled at the QU alumni reception at the APTA combined sections meeting in New Orleans in February. Pictured from left, Kelly Masterson, a sixth-year PT student; Todd Cacopardo, DPT ’10; Professor Donald Kowalsky ’77; and Gene Giamarino ’77.

Spotlight on Alumni

Department News

Collaboration boosts quality Denise Fiore ’79, MBA ’91, sprints over the glass bridge that connects the Smilow Cancer Hospital at Yale-New Haven to the new clinical laboratory building—55 Park St.—a project she helped bring to fruition. On the way, several people greet her. They are just a few of the 850 health professionals she oversees as the new vice president of clinical support services at YaleNew Haven Hospital. She is responsible for the departments of rehabilitation services and respiratory care, as well as diagnostic radiology, Denise Fiore (back, far right) works with many QU alumni at Yale-New Haven Hospital, laboratory medicine and including (back, l-r): Deb Flanagan ’01, a nurse, and Cheryl Granucci ’91, director of patient transport at Yale-New radiology, as well as (seated) Kathleen Zimmermann ’97, a nurse, and Jacquelyn Haven. Her team includes Crenshaw ’01, manager of diagnostic radiology. medical technologists, nurses, occupational therapists, physical therapists and diagnostic imaging technologists and others. Today, Fiore continues to build new bridges—this time, between the different divisions to make her staff successful. “Collaboration among health professionals is so important in today’s team approach to the delivery of care to patients,” says Fiore, who is a Six Sigma Black Belt, certified in Six Sigma quality management methods. She also leads a hospital-wide effort to use these methods to improve patient care and effectively use hospital resources. Teamwork has been key to producing successful ideas. The departments of nursing and patient transport, for example, worked together to develop a “ticket to ride” program. It streamlined the paperwork required to move patients, leaving nurses more time with patients. Fiore would like to develop similar initiatives that eliminate waste, increase safety and improve a patient’s experience. Communication is even more critical today as health care becomes increasingly complex, Fiore says. As an example, she cites the growth of point-of-care testing, in which tests are done at bedside. It requires nurses who perform the tests and lab professionals who provide the oversight to work together. Fiore was pleased to learn of the School of Health Science’s emphasis on interdisciplinary learning. She earned her bachelor’s degree in medical technology and her MBA from Quinnipiac, and now serves on the School of Health Sciences Advisory Board. For her contributions to the industry and leadership, she received the University’s Outstanding Business Alumni Award in 2008. Everyone benefits when recent graduates value the expertise each health professional brings to the table and is willing to work as part of a team, she explains. Fiore’s staff members are on board with her vision. “Everything we do centers around the patient,” says Cheryl Granucci, ’91, director of radiology in Fiore’s division. “It takes the whole team to understand what’s going on with the patient to provide the proper care.”

Building success in rehabilitation For Eileen Khan ’75, her career has always been a family affair. When Khan attended Quinnipiac to become a nurse, her sister, Gena Tannoia ’75, followed. After graduation, they both worked at the same rehabilitation facility in New Haven, Conn. In 1982, Khan, her sister and her husband, Farooq, purchased the facility and founded Montowese Health and Rehabilitation Center. “It was my husband’s idea. He wanted us to at least make a good salary,” Khan explains. “We did much more than that.” The family turned Montowese into a leading provider of subacute Eileen ’75 and Farooq Khan, owners of Montowese Health and Rehabilitation Center care in the region. Khan earned her long-term care administration certificate from QU and became the vice president of nursing services at the center. Her sister was director of nursing and her husband was the center’s administrator. Tapping into family members’ strengths helped Montowese succeed. Gena Tannioa passed away in 2005, but not before her daughter joined the business. The Khans’ son, Saleem ’93, a QU business alumnus, became president of Connecticut Handivan, a transportation service in North Haven that works with Montowese. One of the Khans’ smartest decisions was to move away from long-term care to focus on rehabilitation. Over time, hospital stays shortened. Montowese was fortuitously positioned to provide short-term, rehabilitative care. “I get joy out of seeing people go home healthier than when they arrived,” Khan says. In 1988, the Khans built their current 60,000-square-foot facility in North Haven, which doubled the number of beds to 120. They added modern rehabilitative equipment, new administrative technologies and built a pool. Having been a nurse, Eileen always made sure her staff had the necessary tools and resources, but being frugal helped the business survive during lean economic times. For nearly two decades, the Khans didn’t invest in advertising, but instead relied only on word-of-mouth marketing. Last fall, given the growing competition, they added a marketing administrator to their staff of more than 200. At Montowese, nurses serve as case managers who, along with other health professionals, meet regularly to discuss patients’ progress. Khan says, “In this family, we all work together to treat the patient.”

A complete list of research and news is online at Biomedical Sciences Michael J. Smith, director of the cardiovascular perfusion program, Ed Delaney, adjunct professor, and six students wrote “Extracorporeal Life Support for Pandemic Influenza: The Role of Extracorporeal Membrane Oxygenation in Pandemic Management” in the December 2010 issue of The Journal of Extracorporeal Technology. • In February, Smith and eight graduate students participated in a simulation using the Orpheus Cardiopulmonary Bypass Simulation System at Upstate University • Cardiovascular perfusion student Brian Harvey won best student presentation for “International Pediatric Perfusion Practice: 2011 Survey” at the American Society of Extracorporeal Technology’s International Conference in April. • Courtney Hyland, a pathologist assistant student, won a Siemens-ASCP scholarship. Diagnostic Imaging Tania Blyth ’97, MHS’08, clinical assistant professor, and Gerald Conlogue, MHS ’77, professor, co-authored the chapter, “Imaging in the Medical Examiner’s Facility,” in “Brogdon’s Forensic Radiology.” Conlogue also wrote the chapters, “Imaging in the Field” and “Radiology of Special Objects, Antiquities and Mummies.” Nursing Lisa O’Connor, associate professor, and Celeste Yanni, assistant professor, presented two peer-reviewed posters — “Tools for Navigating the Track Toward Promotion and Tenure” and “Speaking and Synthesizing across the Specialty Silos: An Innovative Approach to Bridge the Community Health/ Acute Care Continuum” — at the Mosby Faculty Development Institute in January. • Student Katherine Alessi ’11 received the 2011 Nightingale Award for Excellence in Nursing. Occupational Therapy Professor Catherine Meriano ’86, MHS ’91, and Jennifer Rafferty, associate director for instructional design at Quinnipiac, led the workshop, “Using Web 2.0 in Everyday Practice,” at the annual Connecticut Occupational Therapy Association Conference in Cromwell in April. • Associate Professor Martha Sanders co-authored the article, “Does Work Contribute to Successful Aging in Older Workers?” in The International Journal of Aging and Human Development. • Professor Tara Glennon ’85 and Kim Hartmann ’76, MHS ’82, OT chair, published chapters in “Autism: a Comprehensive Ocupational Therapy Approach.” • Several faculty presented at the AOTA national conference in April. Presenters included: Glennon; Hartmann; Sanders; Tracy Van Oss, clinical assistant professor; Nancy Bagatell, assistant professor; Salvador Bondoc, associate professor; Pamela Hewitt ’86, visiting clinical assistant professor; Donna Latella, professor; Roseanna Tufano ’80, clinical assistant professor; and Associate Dean Betsey Smith ’79, as well as 19 students. • Marilyn B. Cole, professor emerita, was guest editor of a special edition of OT International published in March, and she published an article in Occupational Therapy International
in October. • Hartmann gave a presentation on assistive technologies for the classroom to graduate education students in December. Physical Therapy Professor Russell Woodman co-authored, “Application of the Mulligan Approach for Lumbar Mechanical Derangement,” in PhysioTimes (January 2011). • Four physical therapy professors and two recent graduates presented at the APTA’s Combined Sections Meeting in New Orleans, La., in February. Michelle Broggi ’88 and Tracy Wall ’93, MS ’99, both clinical assistant professors, and Kelly Masterson ’08, DPT ’10, presented, “The Effects of Body-Weight-Supported Locomotor Training and Aquatic Therapy on Post-Stroke Ambulation: Two Case Studies.” • Katherine Harris, associate professor, presented, “Investigating the Efficacy of Weighting the Subscales of the Braden Scale for Predicting Pressure Sore Risk to Enhance its Predictive Validity.” • Wall, Harris and Todd Cacopardo ’08, MPT ’10, presented, “The Effects of the Nintendo Wii on Dynamic Balance and Functional Gait in an Individual with GuillainBarre Syndrome.”

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Career Corner | Cindy Christie


Smart social networking

Aspiring physician studies MRSA

According to a study by the University of Dayton, 97 percent of all students at four-year schools have a Facebook profile. What might be surprising is 28 percent of those students say they have joined groups that may not accurately reflect “the real me.” Even so, 34 percent of employers believe these profiles are accurate reflections of the students. This discrepancy could cost students job opportunities.

Joelle Jacobsen ’11 has never been one to shy away from a challenge. A biomedical sciences major, she has set her sights on medical school and plans to become a pediatrician.

The study also found that of the students with Facebook accounts: • 48 percent have profanity or “inappropriate” comments on their page • 36 percent are shown in pictures with alcohol • 24 percent don’t use privacy settings Information spreads quickly online. Even if you use privacy settings, your information and photos might still find their way into the public sphere. Be careful what you post. At the 2009 National Association of Colleges and Employers conference, 59 percent of employers reported using Facebook to research candidates. Of the employers who said they use Facebook in their hiring decisions, 23 percent said they didn’t interview a candidate based on what they saw and 26 percent said they didn’t hire someone after an interview. Consider “cleaning up” your Facebook account now, as well as accounts on other social networking sites, such as Twitter and LinkedIn. This being said, social networking sites are great ways to connect with current employees, research company information, and show your interest in an organization. Once you have removed any questionable content from your profiles, join the Facebook “fan pages” or “groups” of companies you are applying to, as well as professional groups in your industry. Cynthia Christie Assistant Dean for Career Services, School of Health Sciences 203-582-3656

During her junior year at Quinnipiac, she volunteered in the pediatrics department at Yale-New Haven Hospital, where she helped to administer a children’s developmental screening program. From Fall 2009 through Summer 2010, Jacobsen worked with Professor Lisa Cuchara, researching the epidemiology of Methicillinresistant Staphylococcus aureus or MRSA, a bacterial infection that is highly resistant to some antibiotics. During the project, Jacobsen helped collect 1,100 samples and nasal swabs from members of the Quinnipiac community. She tested the bacteria with various antibiotics to determine resistance.

“I learned a lot of laboratory techniques, as well as the difficulties that come with research,” Jacobsen said. “Things don’t always go the way you want, and it requires a lot of effort, work and time to be successful.” Jacobsen was instrumental in starting a student chapter of the Microbiology Club at Quinnipiac. The club, which is recognized by the American Society of Microbiology, is open to any health science student, but is geared toward those who are doing research. A well-rounded student, Jacobsen also was captain of the Quinnipiac women’s softball team, which finished in third place during the 2010 season and made it to the first round of the NEC Tournament. As a freshman, she joined the team as a walk-on, earning a regular spot at either first or second base. Jacobsen, who is originally from Canada, moved to the U.S. with her family when she was 5. An athlete and an honors student throughout high school, she earned First-Team All-Conference honors three of her four years in softball and her senior year in field hockey. Much of her inspiration comes from her parents. “Even with softball, my mom and dad encouraged me to take my bat, glove and ball bag to school. They said, ‘This is something you can do,’” Jacobsen said. “My parents have always been supportive of me. That’s what made me have such big aspirations.”

CATCH UP WITH Join the Quinnipiac university community at the following conferences and events: June 3, 2011

June 20, 2011 HealthBeat is published twice a year for alumni and friends of the School of Health Sciences by the Quinnipiac University Office of Public Affairs. To submit information, contact Quinnipiac University does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, creed, gender, age, sexual orientation, national or ethnic origin, or disability status in the administration of its educational and admissions policies, employment policies, scholarship and loan programs, athletic programs, or other University-administered programs. Photographers: John Hassett, Robert Lisak, Mark Stanczak and Gayle Zucker. Writers: Alejandra Navarro, Karen Guzman and Donna Pintek.

Joelle Jacobsen ’11

Aug. 27–Sept. 2 , 2011

Sept. 17, 2011

American Academy of Physician Assistants Annual Conference and Alumni Reception, Las Vegas, NV.

Nearly 50 employers attended the second annual Health Professions Career Fair in March on the North Haven Campus and spoke to students about opportunities in the industry.

National Athletic Trainers’ Association Annual meeting and Symposia and Alumni Reception, New Orleans, LA. American Association of Pathologists’ Assistants Annual Continuing Education and Business Conference and Alumni Reception, San Francisco, CA. occupational Therapy Alumni Academic Conference, North Haven Campus.

For more event information as it becomes available, visit

Quinnipiac Healthbeat Newsletter  

The Quinnipiac Healthbeat Newsletter is published twice per year and features news from Quinnipiac University's School of Health Sciences.

Quinnipiac Healthbeat Newsletter  

The Quinnipiac Healthbeat Newsletter is published twice per year and features news from Quinnipiac University's School of Health Sciences.