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Kari McDonald, , MSN RN

University of Texas-Austin PhD
Home Austin Texas United States


Ms. Kari McDonald was born and raised in Texas and has lived most of her life in Austin. Kari graduated in 1987 from Texas State University with a Bachelors degree in Music and a concentration in voice performance. Kari returned to school in 2003 at the University of Texas at Austin, School of Nursing (SON) to attend the Alternate Entry Masters program. She became a registered nurse in 2004 and received a Masters of Science in Nursing with a Parent/Child focus in 2006. After receiving her Masters, Kari began teaching in an accredited associate degree nursing program and taught nursing for nine years. In 2015, Kari returned to the University of Texas SON to work on a PhD in nursing. Her primary dissertation and research focus is LGBTQ adolescents, mental health and suicide prevention. Global health mission work is also an area of interest for Kari. She has participated in missionary work in West Africa and continues to seek and contribute to medical mission work targeting the education of clinic workers and community health assistants. Her current mission focus is located in Uganda and will include work with a new fistula clinic. Kari is a member of Sigma Theta Tau International (Epsilon Theta Chapter), the Association of Nurses in Graduate School (ANGS), the National League of Nursing (NLN), the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI), and the Gay, Lesbian and Straight Education Network (GLSEN). Kari lives with her spouse of 19 years and two beautiful daughters.


Research/Clinical Practice Area: Jonas Nurse Leader – Other
Dissertation: LGBTQ adolescent mental health: Addressing the safety of an under-served population