Nurse Practitioner and Doctor of Nursing Practice Programs Honor Community Partners in Virtual Event

4 pictures of award winners from Nursing Department's Community Partners Recognition Event

Community partner award winners (starting top left, clockwise): Director of Nursing Research at Abbott Northwestern Hospital Ruth Bryant, PhD,  MS, RN, CWOCN; Dakota Child and Family Clinic – Founder Gretchen Moen, DNP, APRN, CPNP-PC, and Stephanie Kimmes, RN, CNP, (Emre Mauleon, BSN’09, MSN’17, APRN, CPNP, not pictured); Member-elect of the Minnesota State Senate (District 64) Erin Murphy MAOL’05, RN; and Integrative Geriatrics – Teresa Cyrus DNP’20, Nicole Hentges, NP, Becky Alhstrom, NP, MSN (left to right, image provided and taken before COVID-19 pandemic)

On December 10, three St. Catherine University nursing programsNursing (MSN/DNP): Nurse Practitioner, Doctor of Nursing (DNP): Post-Master’s, and Nursing (DNP): Dual-Degree—hosted the Community Partners Recognition Event to honor and thank the programs’ partners for their contributions to the nursing students in these programs over the past year. The event was virtual due to the COVID-19 pandemic, and guests joined from around Minnesota to celebrate. Dean of Nursing Laura Fero, PhD, MSN, RN, and Associate Dean of Nursing Matthew Byrne, PhD, RN, CNE, welcomed over 160 guests and reflected on the incredible efforts of the programs' partners and healthcare industry as a whole, “Thank you for coming together as an inspiring group of nursing leaders. We are living through unprecedented times, and leadership and influence have never been more critical. What our front-line workers have done is nothing less than extraordinary.”

Throughout the evening, there were highlights from NP preceptorships and DNP mentorships from students and faculty, prizes, and a faculty performance. Comedian Khadijah Cooper, who also works as a healthcare provider in her role as the program coordinator and sexuality educator at Annex Teen Clinic in Robbinsdale, Minn., brought plenty of laughs to the celebratory virtual gathering, covering topics from awkward video meetings to the educational video game, The Oregon Trail. The event also featured surprise pre-recorded guest appearances by Minnesota Governor Tim Walz and Michael T. Osterholm, PhD, MPH, the director of the Center for Infectious Disease Research and Policy at the University of Minnesota — who was recently named to President-elect Joe Biden’s COVID-19 Advisory Board.

During the week leading up to the event, St. Kate’s nurse practitioner student presentations were available to view online, highlighting the scholarship and research completed in the past year.

The evening culminated in honoring four particularly outstanding community partners, who received their awards prior to the event following COVID-19 safety protocol:

Doctor of Nurse Practitioner Mentor Award: Allina Health's Director of Nursing Research at Abbott Northwestern Hospital Ruth Bryant, PhD, MS, RN, CWOCN

Nurse Practitioner Preceptor Award: Dakota Child and Family Clinic —Founder Gretchen Moen, DNP, APRN, CPNP-PC, Stephanie Kimmes, RN, CNP, and Emre Mauleon, BSN’09, MSN’17, APRN, CPNP

Transforming Healthcare Award: Member-elect of the Minnesota State Senate (District 64) Erin Murphy MAOL’05, RN

Nurse Practitioner Preceptor Award: Integrative Geriatrics —Teresa Cyrus DNP’20, Nicole Hentges, NP, and Becky Alhstrom, NP, MSN


All the St. Kate’s students, faculty, staff, and guest speakers gave their heartfelt gratitude to the programs’ partners, who not only worked tirelessly to keep their communities safe during the pandemic, but also gave their precious time and energy to make sure St. Kate’s NP and DNP students received a crucial part of their education. As Fero and Byrne remarked, "It is time for nursing to take their seat at the table of decision-making for our local, regional, national, and international communities. Never before, has it been this important. We collectively hold the power to change healthcare and elevate our practice. Regardless of if you are a student, clinician, leader, or educator we must take the responsibility to address cultural fluency, social determinants of health, social injustice, and systemic racism. I encourage you all to use your voice, influence, knowledge, and determination for the greater health of all."

View event webpage and event recording here

Learn more about St. Catherine University nursing department here