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March of Dimes Names BC Connell School of Nursing's Allyssa Harris Nurse of the Year


Chestnut Hill, Mass. (October 2013) -- Connell School of Nursing Assistant Professor Allyssa Harris has been named a 2013 Nurse of the Year by the Massachusetts Chapter of the March of Dimes. Harris was honored in the category of Nurse Researcher.

Nurse of the Year is a statewide award that recognizes exceptional nurses, who are an integral part of the March of Dimes’ mission for stronger, healthier babies. Harris was one of 17 nurses honored at a recent ceremony in Natick.

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Allyssa Harris

“It is an honor to receive an award from such a prestigious organization. The health of women and children is very important because they form the backbone for many families,” said Harris. “To be recognized for my work with adolescents is extremely important because the negative behaviors that adolescents adopt can have significant consequences on their health and well-being during their reproductive years and on their children.”

"I am so proud of Dr. Harris's recognition by the Massachusetts Chapter of the March of Dimes," said Connell School of Nursing Dean and Professor Susan Gennaro. "The March of Dimes' mission to improve the health of babies is important to all of us and Dr. Harris' commitment to improving the health of women and infants in the US is closely aligned with that mission."

Harris, a faculty member at Boston College since 2007, teaches advance practice in women's health nursing and theoretical foundations in women's health and pediatric nursing as well as a childbearing clinical. Her research interests are in adolescent sexual decision-making and risk behaviors and healthcare disparities. She holds an appointment at the Munn Center for Nursing Research at Mass. General Hospital and served as a women's health nurse practitioner at the Roxbury Comprehensive Community Health Center. Harris has been published in the Journal of Obstetric, Gynecologic, and Neonatal Nursing, The Journal for Nurse Practitioners, Nursing for Women’s Health and Journal of the Black Nurses Association. In 2011, she was honored for excellence in nursing education/teaching by the New England Black Nurses Association.

Celebrating its 75th anniversary this year, the March of Dimes is committed to helping mothers have full-term pregnancies and researching the problems that threaten the health of babies.

--Kathleen Sullivan, Office of News & Public Affairs, kathleen.sullivan@bc.edu