Twin Sisters

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Twin Sisters are Amazing Alumni
Honoured by NNPBC


Jenifer Tabamo – MSN, 2015 Jacqueline Lum – MN-NP, 2011

Jenifer Tabamo (l) and Jacqueline Lum (r) pose at the 2018 Nurses and Nurse Practioners of BC award celebrations with their mother, Maria Roman, who is an LPN at Vancouver Coastal Health Banfield Pavilion. Photo: Joseph Tabamo.


During the 2018 Nurses and Nurse Practitioners of BC (NNPBC) ceremony on December 17, 2018 at the Sheraton Hotel in Vancouver, the NNPBC “recognized the contributions of nurses to the transformation of the Canadian health care system and their impact on the daily lives of British Columbians.” Some of the individuals being honoured are affiliated with the School (see Kudos page 18), and of those, two of our alumni are twin sisters, Jenifer Tabamo and Jacqueline Lum. Below are excerpts from the program of the evening. For full bios of all our faculty and alumni honoured by the NNPBC as well as pictures of the event, please visit:

Innovation in Nursing Award

Jenifer Tabamo is clinical nurse specialist and innovative and visionary leader at Vancouver General Hospital who advances nursing practice in the care of complex adult and older adult patients in the medicine program. She has extensive clinical background in acute medicine, critical care, gerontology and dementia care. She graduated from UBC with an MSN with specialized focus in advanced practice nursing clinical nurse specialist role, leadership and education streams in 2015, and is certified in both medical-surgical and gerontology nursing specialties through the Canadian Nursing Association (CNA) certification and credentialing program.
Through Jenifer’s research, she facilitates critical dialogues with patients, families, and care staff, leads integration of evidence into practice and shapes the future of hospital care.

Excellence in Nursing Practice

Jacqueline Lum exemplifies advanced practice by integrating both the science and art of nursing. She has over ten years experience and training in critical care and acute medicine. She graduated with distinction from our Master of Nursing-Nurse Practitioner program in 2011. She successfully trained for the six-month acute care cardiac-surgery NP post-graduate fellowship program, the first of its kind in Canada, and worked in Royal Columbian Hospital (RCH) cardiac surgery units as one of its very first NPs.
Through her research works, Jacqueline participates in peer and self-reviews to assess, evaluate and discover impact of cardiac services at the client, community and population level and shares these findings across broad avenues. In addition, patients and families praise her high standards and compassionate presence.

Students in Community

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Measles and Social Pediatrics


In 1919, as plans for the School of Nursing were coming to fruition, Canada was at the height of the devastating influenza outbreak that followed the First World War. Then, in 1927, Assistant Professor Mabel Gray—who eventually took the role of director of the school—published her research in The Canadian Nurse using a recent measles outbreak at UBC “as an example of the nurse’s work in this special field.” She called her paper “The Place of the Public Health Nurse is Epidemiology.” Now, even after seeing an abatement in measles through a decades-long program of prevention and immunization, the disease has made a comeback. These epidemics form the battlefields on which public health nurses wage their war against disease through educating, comforting, and protecting with immunization.

The most recent measles outbreak reached Vancouver this past winter and the public school that was in the thick of it all was in the Ravensong Community Health area. One Friday in February, UBC nursing students in community (Social Pediatrics) stepped into action, assisting the public health nurses (PHN) in the school clinics.
Some students have also been conducting health promotion education on vaccination in a variety of settings in this area.

The public health nursing mandate has always been prevention of communicable diseases through educating families and providing protection through immunizations. Nursing educators are also using the recent outbreak to underline theory, lecturing on communicable disease to nursing students during the winter session. It is also used as an example to illustrate nursing’s role in management of outbreaks and to underline the importance of immunization.

For further information about the importance of vaccinating for measles, watch the World Health Organization’s fabulous video from 2004 available free online called “Fragile Lives” revolving around one family’s experience with measles in Ireland. (Part 4: Rejection

ITCH Awards


Two of our recent MSN graduates, Raji Nibber and Patrina Lo, won first and third prizes for best student poster at Information Technology and Communications in Health (ITCH) in Victoria on February 14, 2019. Thirty student posters were presented from Canada, US, and the UK. The best poster event was sponsored by Canada Health Infoway. It was a great night!

Patrina Lo and Raji Nibber pose with their winning posters at ITCH in Victoria on February 14.

Raji Nibber completed her Scholarly Practice Advancement Research (SPAR) in Aug 2018, and at ITCH, took first prize for her poster entitled: A Rapid Review of Psychometric Properties of Instruments that Measure Informatics Competencies for Practicing Nurses.

Patrina Lo completed her thesis in Oct 2018, and won third prize for her poster entitled: Patterns of Action Items in an Electronic Handover Tool.

Two other students presented posters: Jillisa Byard, MSN Oct 2018 and Abdul-fatuwa Abdulai, PhD student. Jillisa then presented her findings during a Canada Health Infoway Webinar on March 27, 2019.

Submitted by Leanne M. Currie
Associate Professor

New Electives


The principles for long-lasting satisfaction like social connectedness, expression of gratitude, living in the present, daily workout, and sufficient sleep, are essential for building an emotionally rich and balanced life. Around the world, educational institutions from elementary schools through post-secondary are introducing methods for building that balance right into the curricula. The School of Nursing’s new electives offer additional tools for creating balance in the life of all students at UBC.

Check out NURS 180 Stress and Strategies to Promote WellbeingNURS 280 Human Sexual Health, and NURS 290 Health Impacts of Climate Change to see how the school is offering the UBC student community fresh initiatives for a balanced life:

Student Leadership

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Recognition of Student Leadership

Lara Gurney

[L-R]: Bud Stapleton (Sharon’s father); Sandra Stapleton (Sharon’s sister); Lara Gurney, RN; Geoff Davenport (Sharon’s husband). Photo provided by Lara Gurney.

The UBC School of Nursing extends our sincere congratulations to Lara Gurney, a graduate student who was recently awarded the Sharon Stapleton Memorial Leadership Fund.

Lara is currently an Emergency Nurse Clinician, with a strong focus and background in Critical Care Nursing, at Vancouver General Hospital (VGH). In addition, she is currently completing her thesis—on a very unique approach to curbing nurses’ emotional fatigue in critical care settings. At VGH, she initiated the Patient Stories Project (PSP) as a means to address burnout and to cultivate positivity in the workplace. The PSP aims to accomplish this by acknowledging nurse achievements in the critical care environment.

Burnout is prevalent among nursing staff in critical care units, and exerts significant influence on job dissatisfaction, absenteeism, and high staff turnover rates. This syndrome is characterized by emotional exhaustion, depersonalization, and reduced personal accomplishment. It is common among occupations that involve extensive interactions with others and chronic exposure to workplace stressors such as anxiety, physical labour, and shift work.

Through the PSP, patients are provided with the opportunity to share with the nurses and the health care team their recovery and personal life accomplishments since hospital discharge. This story-telling project has the potential to offer meaningful enrichment for both parties involved. Nurses are reminded of the value of their profession while patients are prompted to reflect on their recovery progress. When nurses are able to derive meaning from their work, they are less likely to exhibit burnout symptoms, promoting better quality patient care.

Congratulations Lara!


VGH Nurses Say ...

  • “[The PSP] reminds us of the importance of our jobs; everything we do is important even when we feel it is not."

  • “[The PSP] helps humanize the experience and bring explicit meaning to what we do.”

  • “Reading patients’ stories gives me a sense of pride in what my colleagues and I do and acknowledges that our efforts do pay off.”

Chantelle Recsky

Chantelle Recsky, doctoral student at the School of Nursing, was awarded the Canadian Nurses Foundation “Dr Kathryn J Hannah’s Nursing Informatics Scholarship” at the eHealth Conference in Toronto on May 27, 2019.

This is a highly visible award in the informatics community and we are extremely excited about Chantelle’s achievement. As part of the award, she will present her research in a webinar to the Canadian Nursing Informatics Association.

Centenary Gala

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Centenary Gala

A Special Evening for Special People

Elder Roberta Price, Medal of Distinction Awardee. Photos by Martin Dee.


The Honourable Melanie Mark, Minister of Advanced Education and Training

“We really set the bar!” Elizabeth Saewyc announced, after hosting the School of Nursing’s Centenary Gala on May 2, 2019. The sold-out event had received the generous support of the Dean of the Faculty of Applied Science, James Olson, and benefited from the enthusiastic presence of UBC’s President and Vice-Chancellor, Santa J. Ono and other luminaries. The energy was high, the Fairmont Hotel Vancouver was sparkling, the plated meal was delicious, the formal program proceeded swiftly and was full of interesting and humourous content. It was all guided by the ever-entertaining Fred Lee, UBC’s Director of Alumni Engagement. In spite of the dynamic buzz at every table, Mr Lee expertly drew the attention of the delighted guests to view the special video address by the Honourable Melanie Mark, Minister of Advanced Education and Training, and to hear the letters from members of the Royal Family. Somehow, without slowing the pace of the evening, Dr Saewyc managed to grant a moment in the sun to each one of the honoured guests who wore the coveted Centenary Medal of Distinction (see list to read their short biographies).

Dr James Olson, Dean of Applied Science

President Santa Ono takes a selfie

This level of success is not easy to attain and the school cannot offer enough thanks to members of the Centenary Committee who coordinated the event, especially those at Applied Science Alumni Engagement. Once again we acknowledge the generous support of the Faculty of Applied Science, and send kudos to several faculty members who sponsored tables for student attendees. To all of these people as well as those who work in the background quietly making things splendid, we extend heartfelt thanks for an evening that truly raised the bar.

For more memories, visit