Award Recipient

Elizabeth Straus

Dorothy Kergin Fellowship Award

I have worked with young people with disabilities since my early teens and, while my first degree was in mathematical sciences, I was drawn to nursing as a profession with a vast array of opportunities to continue this work. I began my nursing career in acute care, but spent most of my bedside nursing career in pediatric and young adult home care, which was incredibly fulfilling. This work also provided a powerful lens into the complex contextual factors influencing disabled people’s lives and contribute to health and social inequities.


Another significant part of my nursing identity is my role as an educator. I have been teaching undergraduate nursing students for the last five years and feel such pride in seeing my students flourish and make a difference as nurses in their communities.


As a PhD candidate in the School of Nursing at the University of British Columbia, my research focuses on exploring the notion of well-being with disabled young people who use ventilators long-term and how social forces influence their lives. Beyond doctoral studies, I hope to build a program of research focused on well-being and health and social equity for and with disabled persons and other marginalized populations. I am honored and tremendously grateful to receive the Dorothy Kergin Award to support my ongoing studies.

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