In my doctoral research at the University of Central Florida, I am exploring the promotion of flourishing, defined as the optimal state of mental health, including psychological, emotional, and social well-being. My dissertation will be a grounded theory study of the social forces that influence flourishing in ethnically diverse youth. My interest in this research area is based in my clinical experience as a mental health nurse at the VA, as well as my undergraduate preparation in psychology and graduate preparation in public health. With nine years of experience in mental health, I have spent the last six years as a nurse manager of an outpatient recovery program that promotes community integration for Veterans diagnosed with significant mental health conditions. Through this experience I have found a passion for mental health promotion, not only for individuals with a mental health condition, but also for all people to live a life of meaning and contentment regardless of diagnosis. As a nurse manager, I have had the opportunity to take on many leadership opportunities, including co-chairing the Nursing Research Council, being the principal investigator on a study for a Whole Health initiative, and being a member of the Institutional Review Board (IRB), among other committees. Additionally, I published a concept analysis on flourishing in Issues in Mental Health Nursing in 2017. Finally, I was inducted into Sigma Theta Tau in 2018.
Research/Clinical Practice Area: Jonas Scholar – Psych-Mental Health Dissertation: Anticipated Dissertation: A Qualitative Exploration of Flourishing in Black Youth