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William F. Connell School of Nursing

International and intercultural collaboration

connell school news


Undergraduate nursing students, accompanied by Associate Professor Ellen Mahoney and Clinical Assistant Professor Colleen Simonelli, recently traveled to Lausanne, Switzerland for the 2010 Summer University Nursing Program. The program is a unique opportunity for students and faculty from different countries, working in the same discipline, to come together in a truly intercultural and international context. In addition to helping students to expand their perspectives and grow their competencies, the program also creates international networks, facilitating the development of international research.

60 students from around the world participated in the 2010 Summer University. In addition to American and Swiss students, the National University of Singapore and the PSG College of Nursing in Coimbatore, India also took part. Students participated in training workshops, courses, seminars, visits, and cultural activities. Through these experiences, students addressed fundamental questions in the field of nursing and fostered debate enriched by a wide range of cultural perspectives. Topics this year included evidence-based nursing, assisted suicide, maltreatment of the elderly, and adolescent mental health.

In addition to the academic program, the students were also able to experience excursions in the Alps, visits to Geneva, Bern, the Montreux Jazz Festival, and the Paleo open-air music festival in Nyon.

This opportunity came about as a result of a visit from Swiss health care leaders to Boston College in February 2010. Biago Tedesco, director of international programs at the Board of Higher Education in Vaud, Switzerland, invited Boston College students to participate in the summer program during his visit to campus.

Pictured: Swiss student Becky Williams (left) and Connell School of Nursing student Kimberley Pomerleau '11 (right) give a presentation on suicide risk factors and prevention