Nursing History Symposium 2018

Register for the 2018 Nursing History Symposium

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Preliminary Programme

  • Opening Presentation “Communities Change and so do Libraries” by Aleteia Greenwood, Head, Woodward Library and Biomedical Branch, UBC
  • Opening of Panel “Preserving Nursing and Health History in a Time of Digitization” by Larissa Ringham, Librarian, Digital Projects, UBC Digitization Initiatives
  • Several short panel presentations and discussion will follow
  • The Symposium will conclude with a Walk About of a series of nursing history displays and lunch
  • The interactive symposium will be held at the UBC Woodward library’s historic space, starting in the Memorial Room.

{Full Programme Coming Soon}


Presented by: UBC librarians, archivists, the UBC Consortium for Nursing History Inquiry, and the BC History of Nursing Society

Time: 10 am – 2 pm

Venue: Memorial Room, UBC Woodward Library, 2198 Health Sciences Mall, Vancouver, BC [MAP]; Disability Access


Twitter: @ubcnursing #nursinghistory


REGISTRATION (lunch included)

General ticket: $15

Reduced ticket (students & retirees): $10


Health History Lecture: Capturing the History of Public Health Nursing and its Transformation from Nurses’ Work Experiences

In this lecture Ranjit Dhari, Lecturer for the UBC School of Nursing, reflects on a recent oral history project on Public Health Nursing in the Lower Mainland.

Ranjit Dhari

Ranjit Dhari


March 9, 2016
12:00 – 1:00
UBC School of Nursing – 3rd Floor, UBC Hospital
Room T206


Watch the Webcast 


Nursing Rounds: Beyond the Cuckoo’s Nest: Nurses and ECT in Dutch Psychiatry, 1940-2010

On February 23, 2016, Dr. Geertje Boschma reflects on her research on the history of electroconvulsive therapy, nursing, and Dutch psychiatry for the UBC School of Nursing’s “Nursing Rounds.”

Abstract: This presentation examines the history of electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) from the viewpoint of nurses in the particular context of Dutch psychiatry. After a period of dwindling use and much controversy over ECT in the 1970s and 1980s, its application increased again during the 1990s. Competent nursing was a key component in ECT treatment from the outset. While nursing’s close ties to medical knowledge and therapies have been a source of ambivalence and professional tension, the connection also gave nurses new opportunities to renegotiate their expertise in the domain of biological psychiatry. As ECT became more accepted during the 1990s nursing’s grounding in the medical domain opened new professional avenues in ECT-nursing expertise and advanced practice.

Bio: Dr. Boschma is a professor in the School of Nursing at the University of British Columbia. She leads a research program on the history of nursing and health care, with special emphasis on mental health and mental health nursing. Dr. Boschma’s research aims to add to the understanding of change in health care and nursing’s professional identity.


UBC School of Nursing, 3rd Floor of UBC Hospital

Room T206

8:00 am – 8:50 am

Watch the Video

UBC Centennial Nursing History Symposium

Learning Across Borders: Nursing Education, Practice, and Transnational Migration in the Long-20th Century

Dr. Kathryn McPherson, Associate Professor in Gender, Feminist, and Women’s History at York University and author of the seminal text, Bedside Matters: The Transformation of Canadian Nursing, 1900-1990 gave the keynote lecture. In her lecture, “Learning Across Borders: Nursing Education, Practice, and Transnational Migration in the Long 20th Century,” McPherson spoke to the way recent international scholarship in nursing history has helped us think more critically about the divisions within nursing education – how questions of nursing education have been caught up in larger political and cultural debates about skill, gender, nationalism, and religion.

Keynote Speaker Dr. Kathryn McPherson

Following the keynote, expert scholars in nursing education, Dr. Veronica Strong-Boag, Dr. Sally Thorne, and Assistant Professor Emerita Ethel Warbinek gave a response as a lead-in to discussion with the audience about the future, promise, and persistent challenges of nursing education and academic nursing programs.

Watch the Webcast

This webcast was sponsored by the Irving K. Barber Learning Centre. The event “Almost a 100: University Nursing Education for the Future” was hosted by the UBC School of Nursing Consortium for Nursing History Inquiry as part of the UBC Centennial celebration.