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Doctor of Nursing Practice Program students successfully defend dissertations
Posted 08/22/2017 12:45PM

Ten Master of Science in Nursing to Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) students at Misericordia University successfully defended their dissertations recently by making a final oral defense of their cumulative scholarly research project at the annual capstone presentations on campus.

Students critically evaluate scientific literature while completing the rigorous project in order to develop evidence-based practice approaches that improve outcomes in the health care system. The class addressed a variety of practice problems, including the effect of yoga on multiple sclerosis, improving self-assessment of feet, breast awareness for women, improving diabetic foot assessment, and more. Brenda Hage, Ph.D., D.N.P., C.R.N.P., director, Doctor of Nursing Practice Programs, and Fred Croop, Ed.D., M.B.A., C.M.A., C.P.A., professor of business, served as DNP oral defense evaluators.

Graduates of the program were honored at a dinner at the Irem Temple Country Club in Dallas. The DNP Program also recognized two graduates by presenting them with academic awards. Patricia Rodriguez Hudson of Sugarloaf received the Judith and Harold Harding Excellence in Public Policy, Activism and Advocacy Award, and Catherine Zurawski of Mountaintop was presented with the DNP Award of Excellence in Evidence-Based Practice.

The graduates of the DNP program will receive their degrees at the seventh annual Winter Commencement Ceremony in December.

Misericordia University features the oldest nursing program in the area and graduates more students in the health sciences than any other college or university in Northeastern Pennsylvania. The University offers three undergraduate nursing programs: traditional, full-time nursing students; part-time accelerated evening program for adult students; and the RN to BSN Expressway Program. The undergraduate nursing programs are designed to meet the special educational and scheduling needs of adult and traditional students. They all lead to the Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) degree.

The MSN nursing program is designed to meet the special needs of current BSN registered nurses who desire an advanced practice specialization as a family nurse practitioner. MU also offers a post-master's certificate as a family nurse practitioner for nurses who already have an advanced clinical master's degree and who wish to change or expand their practice focus to primary care. Nurse practitioners are registered nurses with advanced education in health assessment, diagnosis and management of acute and chronic health conditions with expertise in health promotion and disease prevention. Graduate programming leads to the MSN and provides course work in a convenient part-time, one-day-a-week format.

The University also offers an online Doctor of Nursing Practice degree program in two formats to accommodate the needs of busy health care professionals and in response to growing national need.

For more information about the Doctor of Nursing Practice Programs at Misericordia University, please call (570) 674-6400 or visit


Misericordia University Master of Science in Nursing to Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) degree students successfully defended their dissertations by making a final oral defense of their cumulative scholarly research project at the annual capstone presentations. DNP students who made presentations, included first row from left, Victoria Romano, Wilkes-Barre, Pa.; Gabriella Cesare, Moosic, Pa.; Linda Borenstein, Hatfield, Pa., and Jennifer DiVirgilio, Zion Grove, Pa.; standing, Catherine Zurawski, Mountain Top, Pa.; Patricia Rodriguez Hudson, Sugarloaf, Pa.; Jennifer Lynn Zimmerman, Harding, Pa.; Amy Austin, Pittston, Pa.; Alyssa Mocion, Laflin, Pa., and Kaci Birosik, Hanover Township, Pa.

Students walking from the Mary Kintz Bevevino Library
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