Ambassador Spotlight: Linda Weglicki

Linda S. Weglicki, PhD, RN
Medical University of South Carolina

What made you want to become an FNINR Ambassador?
It was clear to me that the nursing profession and community, the largest segment of the healthcare industry, needed and would benefit from well informed and passionate advocates for increased congressional funding to support the National Institute of Nursing Research and its strategic mission and priorities (noting that NINR has one of the lowest budgets at NIH).

How long have you been an FNINR Ambassador?
I believe since 2015.

What advice would you give your younger self?
As I enter my 49th year in nursing, I would advise my younger nurse self, that it is our RESPONSIBILITY to seek out and remain aware of the current policies, the laws and regulations, and the current political landscape that affect and impact the work that we do – in clinical practice, in education, in research, and in being integral members of interprofessional health care teams. This is foundational to advocacy and to not only having a voice, but in being in a position to share your voice.

What made you want to pursue a career in nursing?
My formal introduction to nursing began in high school where, as a 9th grader when I worked as a candy striper at our local hospital. I joined the Future Nurses Club and in my senior year, instead of attending classes, I worked as a nurse tech in my high school- sponsored health care program. My mother was a big influence on my decision to attend nursing school. She attended nursing school when I was young. At that time, she was raising 4 four young children, studying, and then entered the nursing workforce in our community hospital.

What book should every nurse read?
Actually, I would recommend at least two: 1) Notes on Nursing: What it Is, and What it Is Not (Florence Nightingale), and for researchers, 2) The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks (Rebecca Skloot).

What has been your most interesting/surprising outcome while conducting nursing research?
Understanding and learning from your research data, including gaining an understanding about outliers and those things you did not expect.

What is a fun fact many people may not know about you?
I coached competitive fast-pitch girls, 19 and under, softball for about 10 years. Our teams qualified for the NSA and USSSA World Series - while we never won, we were competitive and had a lot of fun.

About Linda

Linda S. Weglicki, PhD, RN, has 48 years of professional nursing experience and service in practice, education, and research, with extensive leadership experience in a variety of roles. She has held faculty and leadership positions at Wayne State University, Florida Atlantic University, and Medical University of South Carolina, where she currently serves as Professor and Dean of the College of Nursing. Linda's program of research has been supported by funded studies of risky behavior (pregnancy, smoking & tobacco use) in youth and young adults; eHealth applications to promote health among older adults; promoting patient-centered outcomes among Veterans; and environmental risks associated with air pollution related to morbidity in chronic conditions, such as asthma and pulmonary disorders.

Dr. Weglicki is a long-standing advocate of interdisciplinary research and partnerships to promote team science and translational research. Linda worked as a Health Scientist Administrator, at the NIH/NINR, Division of Extramural Science Programs and was responsible for shaping the direction of the health promotion and wellness scientific portfolio. She also served as Chief of the NINR Office of Extramural Programs and was responsible for strategic vision in advancing cutting edge and transformative nursing science across all NINR’s science priorities. She has served in leadership positions in American Association of Colleges of Nursing (AACN); Council for Advancement of Nursing Science (CANS); Midwest Nursing Research Society (MNRS), Sigma Theta Tau International (STTI), and is an elected Ambassador of the Friends of the National Institute of Nursing Research (FNINR).

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