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Huntley joins statewide research institute

MORGANTOWN, W.Va. – Mary J. Huntley, M.P.H., has been named assistant director for operations of the [...]

Former hockey hopeful to help visually impaired children lace up their skates and take the ice

MORGANTOWN, W.Va. – Mark DeMontis was a teenager when his dreams of playing professional hockey were dashed by a rare condition that left him legally blind. Now, at 25, he is the CEO of Courage Canada, which provides opportunities for blind and visually impaired children to get on the ice and play hockey. DeMontis will work with West Virginia children participating in the West Virginia University Eye Institute’s Children’s Vision Rehabilitation Program (CVRP) Summer Institute through June 19. Friday, DeMontis will join the campers on the ice of the IceoPlex at Southpointe in Canonsburg, Pa. at 2 p.m. The hockey sessions are sponsored by the CVRP, and the Pittsburgh Penguins will provide gift bags for each child. On Monday (June 18), he will speak to campers at the Bridgeport United Methodist Church on Worthington Drive. After his visit, DeMontis will visit the Eye Institute at 2 p.m. He will return to the IceoPlex on Tuesday (June 19) to spend the day with the campers. In 2004, DeMontis signed a one-year AAA hockey contract with the hope of playing in the NCAA on an athletic scholarship after high school. Three months later, he was diagnosed with Leber’s Optic Neuropathy, a rare genetic condition. At the age of 21, he founded Courage Canada and became the youngest CEO in Canada. Today, the organization has more than 200 visually impaired youth from across the nation participating in learn-to-skate and blind hockey programs. [...]

School of Nursing’s Marcischak a Jonas Scholar

MORGANTOWN, W.Va. – The Jonas Center for Nursing Excellence has named West Virginia University Doctor of Nursing Practice (D.N.P.) student Terri Birkhimer Marcischak, R.N., M.S.N., a 2012-2014 Jonas Nurse Leader Scholar. The Jonas Nurse Leaders Scholar Program aims to boost the number of doctorate-level faculty available to teach in nursing schools nationwide and provides financial assistance and programs in leadership development to scholars. In selecting scholars, the Center considers commitment to leadership development, mentoring and research, among other criteria. Over the next two academic years, Marcischak will be awarded $10,000 in financial support from the Jonas Center. The WVU School of Nursing will provide a $10,000 funding match and up to $2,500 for Marcischak to attend the Jonas Center for Nursing Excellence/American Association of Colleges of Nursing leadership development conference in October 2013. “Upon learning that I was selected to the Jonas Nurse Leaders Scholar Program, I felt very honored as well as excited for the opportunities that lie ahead,” said Marcischak. “I know that the program will provide me with valuable resources to continue a successful career in academic nursing. I have already started working on some leadership activities with my mentor, Dr. Cynthia Persily, who is a great example of a nursing leader.” Marcischak, a board-certified family nurse practitioner, received her baccalaureate degree from the WVU School of Nursing, graduating Summa Cum Laude.  After practicing as a pediatric nurse for several years, Marcischak returned to the School of Nursing to earn her master’s degree. In addition to her current educational pursuits, Marcischak is a senior lecturer within the WVU School of Nursing and works as a family nurse practitioner in the pre-anesthesia unit at Ruby Memorial Hospital. Her current research interests include interventions aimed at decreasing pre-operative anxiety in the parents of children undergoing anesthesia.   The Jonas Nurse Leader Scholars program was launched in 2008 with six scholars in three states. The program now includes more than 200 students in nearly 85 schools across the nation, making it the largest program addressing the nation’s shortage of nursing faculty. [...]

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