Susan Breitenstein, Ph.D., R.N. Selected as a 2012 Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Nurse Faculty Scholar

NEWS RELEASE                                                                         
August 29, 2012   
Rush University’s Breitenstein Selected as a 2012
Robert Wood Johnson Foundation ‘Nurse Faculty Scholar’
Breitenstein is Chosen for Prestigious Program to Advance Careers of Promising
Junior Nurse Faculty, Plans to Develop and Test a Digital Parent Training Program for Low-Income Parents of Young Children
Susan Breitenstein, PhD, RN, PMHCNS-BC, assistant professor at Rush University College of Nursing, is one of just 12 outstanding nursing educators to win a competitive grant from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF) Nurse Faculty Scholars program this year. Breitenstein will receive a three-year, $350,000 award to promote her academic career and support her research. The Nurse Faculty Scholar award is given to junior faculty who show outstanding promise as future leaders in academic nursing.
“The Nurse Faculty Scholars program is an amazing opportunity,” said Breitenstein. “I’ll have access to leaders and mentors, and I know this program will open many doors for me both personally and professionally.”
For her research project, Breitenstein plans to develop and test digital delivery of a parent-training program for low-income, minority parents of young children. The digital adaptation of the evidence-based program will be developed for distribution through an application on the Android tablet. Breitenstein hopes that developing the program for a tablet will make it more available to busy parents. She and her colleagues will also be asking parents to evaluate the program to learn whether it changes parenting behaviors, and how useful they found it.
“One of my main interests is in implementation science,” Breitenstein added. “I want to explore the best ways to deliver evidence-based programs and get them into real-world settings. This grant is supporting that work and will help me improve the systems we use to deliver programs.”
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. It is providing $28 million to five cohorts of outstanding junior nursing faculty. Breitenstein is part of the fifth cohort.
The new Nurse Faculty Scholars also will support the Future of Nursing: Campaign for Action, which is engaging nurses and others in a nationwide effort to implement recommendations from the groundbreaking Institute of Medicine report, The Future of Nursing: Leading Change, Advancing Health.
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 will vastly increase the number of people who can access health care in the United States. As the number of patients increases, there will be greater demand for skilled nurses as well as faculty to educate them. Right now, 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 will also enhance 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 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 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 or Facebook
About Rush
Rush is a not-for-profit academic medical center comprising Rush University Medical Center, Rush University, Rush Oak Park Hospital and Rush Health.
Rush’s mission is to provide the best possible care for its patients. Educating tomorrow’s health care professional, researching new and more advanced treatment options, transforming its facilities and investing in new technologies—all are undertaken with the drive to improve patient care now, and for the future. For more information, visit