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Karen McFadden, Adjunct Nursing Faculty

Karen McFadden

"I want students to be more fully engaged in professional development and continue on the journey of supporting professional practice with evidence-based education and continued curiosity."

Degrees Held:

  • MSN in Nursing Education – University of Memphis, 2007
  • BSN – University of Memphis, 2001
  • B.A. – Kenyon College, 1994

Career Highlights:

  • Austin Peay State University adjunct nursing faculty, 2015-present
  • LearningMate Solutions, Inc. subject matter expert writer, April-May 2016
  • Methodist Le Bonheur Healthcare, Memphis, TN
  • Clinical development specialist, Clinical Education Services, 2005-May 2014
  • Certified in Corporate Coaching, Coach U, Inc., 2010-present
  • Nursing Professional Development Board Certification, ANCC, 2007-present
  • Methodist Le Bonheur Healthcare, Memphis, TN, direct care clinician, 2002-2005
  • University of Memphis, adjunct faculty, Loewenberg School of Nursing, Fall 2007-December 2012
  • Prentice Hall, contracted text reviewer, Fall 2007
  • Coordinator and facilitator for Methodist Le Bonheur Healthcare’s annual Advisory Board presentations, Southwest Tennessee Community College, Nursing Advisory Board, 2014
  • ANCC 2013 Field Test, nursing professional development certification examination, December 2013
  • ANCC Abstract Review Task Force member for March 2014 ANCC Board Certification Conference, November-December 2013
  • The University of Tennessee Health Sciences Academic Advisory Board, August 2012-May 2014
  • ANCC Content Expert Registry member, Nursing Professional Development Certification, July 2012
  • ANCC Standard Setting Panel, Nursing Professional Development Certification, March 2012
  • ANCC 2011 Field Test, Nursing Professional Development Certification Examination, October 2011
  • Hospital Acquired Pressure Ulcer Education Planning committee, Education Committee co-lead, August 2013-May 2014
  • Preceptor for masters of science in nursing education candidates
    • University of Memphis, Spring 2014, 2011 & 2010
    • Walden University, Fall 2012
    • Union University, Summer 2009
  • Inpatient wound care collaborative, Methodist Le Bonheur Healthcare, Spring 2011-May 2014
  • Nurse Leader Institute Steering Committee, Methodist Le Bonheur Healthcare, 2010-2012
  • Psychiatric Student Nurse Award, University of Memphis, 2000

Which classes do you teach online?

Currently teaching NURS 3310: Research for RNs; formerly taught Concepts of the Professional Nurse for RNs, Clinical Integration, and Trends and Issues for Professional Nursing

What do you want students to take away from your classes? What do you want them to learn?

I want students to be more fully engaged in professional development and continue on the journey of supporting professional practice with evidence-based education and continued curiosity.

In each course I want the students to apply what they have learned and be able to transfer that education into professional practice and continued professional development.

What advice would you give to nurses considering the online RN to BSN program?

I would advise nurses to talk with nurses who have graduated from the RN to BSN program to determine how it would fit into their work-life balance and how to manage school, work and life. I would also advise the students to take a non-nursing online course first. Beginning this way, I believe students would have the opportunity to examine how to better balance responsibilities and establish sound time-management skills.

What is the value of a BSN?

To me, the BSN establishes the foundation for a well-rounded, holistic nurse who can comprehensively evaluate clients to promote health—however "health" translates to the client(s)—and support the growth of the profession through leadership and synthesized, coordinated approaches.

Why are you interested in nursing? What drew you to this field?

I was drawn to nursing because I saw it as my opportunity to give back. I worked in marketing previously, and while I was successful there, I felt my work was not making an impact and did not contribute value. I found impact and value in nursing. I also love that nursing is such a holistic profession—how many people can say that they are challenged daily by the arts and sciences? Nursing is truly a "be all you can be" profession; the opportunities to find your niche, your specialty, your true passion are endless in the nursing field.

What qualities make someone a good nurse?

Curiosity, determination, humor, compassion, engagement, creativity, skill

What do you think is the biggest challenge that nurses face today?

The rapid advances of technology and the challenges of CMS' value-based reimbursement programs

Why did you start teaching?

While I believe this quotation is loosely attributed to Florence Nightingale, it does resonate with me: "If you ever stop learning, you might as well stop nursing." I use these words as inspiration for students and hold them close as they reflect my passion for nursing professional development. I love the creative stress of nursing education and hope to inspire others to fully engage in the profession.

What is the one book you think everyone should read?

“Where the Light Gets In” by Kimberly Williams-Paisley

Tell us something interesting about yourself that your students may not know.

I used to work in the music business on the marketing side. While it was exciting and I gained much experience (and got to meet some famous, creative people), at the end of the day I felt as if I didn't have anything to show for my labor. This was the impetus I needed to enroll in nursing school. I wanted to belong to a true profession—one that would enable me to do more and give back.

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