A year at U of R

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Friday, June 30, 2006

Fuld Fellowship

Yesterday, I started working on my project for the Fuld Fellowship. I applied for the Fuld when I was accepted to the U of R, and about 20 or 25 people received the fellowships. In return for them paying a large chunk of tuition, you assist in a research project, participate in a lecture series, and learn about nursing research.

I didn't even know that nurses conducted independent research before I came here. I had assumed that they just participated in or administered research projects where the chief investigators were doctors. All of the projects for the Fuld Fellowships are NURSING research.

The first thing we had to do was read a book and take a test to receive Human Subjects Protection numbers so that we could participate in research. It was interesting to learn some of the ethical issues surrounding human subjects. It is far more complex than I'd thought.

The project I'm working on is called "HIP Teens", or Health Interventions Project for Teens. It's an NIH funded project studying health intervention to prevent AIDS and STD's in teenage girls. They've currently recruited half of the 850 participants. The girls are assigned to one of two training groups, and meet for four group training sessions. They follow the girls for about a year and a half after the intervention, and look at how the training sessions have affected AIDS transmission and STD's.

Because this is research, and not an educational program, I won't actually work with the girls. Everything in the study is controlled, and all of the recruitment of subjects and educational sessions are highly formatted and monitored. I'll be working with data, helping around the office, observing a recruitment session, and maybe even redesigning a logo for them!