Current Research Projects



Faculty members at the College of Nursing maintain active research agendas. The 2016-2017 academic year was an especially productive one for our faculty and Ph.D. students. Below are a few of their recent accomplishments.

Dr. Maryann Bozzette received an award from the University of Missouri Research Board to support her research on transitioning premature infants to direct exclusive breastfeeding in the Newborn Intensive Care Unit (NICU). Her research examines mothers’ breastfeeding self-efficacy and maternal confidence as they transition from bottle to breastfeeding, while tracking infants’ weight gain and health outcomes.

Dr. Kathie Records is a co-investigator for a pilot study testing a Mastery Lifestyle Intervention for its efficacy in decreasing preterm birth among Latinas living in the urban and rural areas of Texas. She was recently funded through the University of Missouri South African Education Program, along with her co-investigators Kippy DiRie (UMSL CON) and Michelle Andipatin (University of Western Cape), to explore women’s facilitators and barriers to prenatal care in the Republic of South Africa. She is also a co-investigator on an interdisciplinary project titled “Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction for Young Breast Cancer Survivors and their Partners”. This project was funded through the University of Missouri Interdisciplinary Inter-Campus award program.

Dr. Sheila Grigsby continues her work on a two-year project funded by the Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute (PCORI). The aims of this project are to build community coalitions to address health disparities in the African American community of North St. Louis, with a focus on patient-defined health concerns and outcomes. Drs. Grigsby and Roxanne Vandermause lead focus groups of diverse community members from parents of adolescents with asthma to youth to educators, eliciting their feedback on best practices for eliminating health disparities and preventing other chronic diseases.

Dr. Roberta Lavin received a grant from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention / American Association of Colleges of Nursing to develop an academic-practice partnership addressing population health in chronic disease and emergency response. Dr. Lavin and co-investigators from Saint Louis University and Johns Hopkins University surveyed administrators and students at schools of nursing, medicine, osteopathic medicine, and public health to garner perspectives on disaster preparedness in each curriculum. Based on the survey findings and interviews with key informants, the project team designed a model program for training in disaster preparedness in higher education and will deliver recommendations for curriculum improvements to the CDC. In addition, Dr. Lavin continues her work (with co-investigators Dr. Anne Fish) on a three-year grant from the Health Research and Services Administration (HRSA) entitled “Academic-Practice Partnerships: Advancing Rural and Urban Nursing Education”.

Dr. Ericka Sanner-Stiehr received an award from the University of Missouri Research Board to test an intervention training nursing students in cognitive response methods for workplace bullying and/or disruptive behaviors. Her study will longitudinally track recent nursing graduates who have entered the workforce to determine whether the intervention was effective at increasing their cognitive response abilities.

Dr. Roxanne Vandermause, in addition to her work with PCORI and acting as liaison between the College of Nursing and Barnes-Jewish Hospital, is a co-investigator with colleagues at the Missouri Institute for Mental Health on an NIMH R01 study entitled “Enhancing Capacity for Mental Health Research and Care in Cambodia.” Dr. Vandermause will lend her qualitative data collection and analytic skills to the project, which seeks to generate new insights about mental health treatment in resource restricted environments.