On March 17th – 21st, the second Virtual Nursing Theory Week was successfully completed! The focus of the conference was, “A World of No Boundaries,” selected to recognize the significant contributions of the late Dr. Margaret Newman in nursing theory, scholarship, and research across her life. The local site for the conference this year was the University of Tennessee Health Science Center (UTHSC) College of Nursing, at the newly established Margaret Newman Center.
The first day of the conference began with an opening panel highlighting Dr. Newman’s Theory of Health as Expanding Consciousness. Speakers during this panel included scholars of nursing who learned from, or are expanding upon, Dr. Newman’s scholarly work. Dr. Marlaine Smith described that Dr. Newman was mistakenly invited to a conference instead of Betty Newman, and as a result, she gave a conference presentation which led to the development of Health as Expanding Consciousness. Book recommendations about Dr. Newman’s work were also shared, such as “Transforming Presence – The Difference that Nursing Makes.” In the end, everyone agreed that per Dr. Newman’s teaching in nursing, “theory is the practice.” Other remarkable presentations and posters occurred throughout that first day on the topics of nursing executives, pediatrics, and even metatheory!
An overriding theme from the first day was the importance of ontological pluralism and pattern recognition with context. This was reflected in the second day with advances in nursing knowledge on the topics of social justice. Scholars discussed the significance of just methodology in our statistical approaches as it pertains to racial markers, as well as integrating critical norm discourse into nursing education. The theme of social justice continued for the next two days. Dr. Lucinda Canty presented her dissertation research on the topic of, “The Lived Experience of Severe Maternal Morbidity Among Black Women.” Additionally, Dr. Canty and colleagues announced the development of a documentary on the experiences of Black, Indigenous, and Nurses of Color that will be released to the public in the future. Other scholars echoed the importance of social justice with the topic of love, emphasizing the importance of love as an action, and honest love versus tough love. On the last day, we returned to our original emphasis in the importance of blending of worldviews, or ontological pluralism, so to speak. During discussion, Scholars reflected on important written works in nursing, such as, “Perspectives on Nursing Theory.” Dr. Leslie Nicole shared her experience in developing the book as a way to promote accessibility of nursing knowledge for doctoral students.
The closing panel for the conference titled, “California Nursing Theorists, 1970s to 50 years later – 2023,” was the introduction to next year’s hosting city – Los Angeles! Stay tuned for more information on next year’s conference by checking here on Nursology.net, as well as NursingTheoryConference.com. Overall, the second Virtual Nurse Theory Week was an exciting and thought provoking experience. New theories were shared, and even friends were made, in the virtual world without boundaries!
To watch some of the exciting panels from the 2022 Virtual Nursing Theory Week please see the links below: