Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

A Narrative Analysis of Familial, Collegiate, and Professional Experiences that Enhance the Formation of Civic Engagement and Mission Commitment among Catholic Health Care Nurses
by Discher, Jennifer M., Ph.D., The University of Toledo, 2011, 284; 3503124
Abstract (Summary)

Educating for citizenship has pervaded the mission of higher education from classical Greece up to the present day. Colleges and universities increasingly encourage service learning and other curricular approaches that promote social responsibility and civic involvement. Other mission-oriented institutions, such as Catholic health care, grapple with issues of social responsibility and civic involvement as they discern their role in the community and face the challenges of a changing workforce.

This dissertation examines, through narrative analysis, how mission commitment in a specific industry—Catholic health care—is influenced by higher education, and how higher education might learn from mission commitment development in that industry. The study explores how nurses understand their personal development of mission commitment with a specific focus on the way in which life experiences—familial, collegiate, and professional—have enhanced or driven their mission formation. Because higher education is an integral part of the process of nurturing and sustaining responsible civic engagement, this study first seeks to understand that process as a pedagogical endeavor. It next narrows this broad discussion of responsible and engaged citizenry to a more focused study of the specific discipline of nursing: first, its theoretical and practical curricular and co-curricular approaches to education, and then the expectations of a specific corresponding industry—Catholic health care— for its newly hired professionals.

The Backward Design process frames the discovery of common ground shared by higher education and Catholic Health care in mission commitment formation. Participants in this study comprise a purposeful sampling of 13 nurses employed by a large Catholic health care system in the Midwest. These nurses are front-line, baccalaureate-prepared, and institutionally recognized, cited, or awarded for their mission commitment. Their collected narratives, analyzed through the lens of a model created by Labov and enhanced by the work of others such as Riessman, Coffey, and Atkinson, lead to recommendations for more effective mission formation practice in both Catholic health care and higher education.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Hamer, Lynne M.
Commitee: Gaillardetz, Richard R., Gentry, Debra S., Idczak, Sue E.
School: The University of Toledo
Department: Higher Education
School Location: United States -- Ohio
Source: DAI-A 73/08(E), Dissertation Abstracts International
Subjects: Nursing, Health education, Higher education
Keywords: Catholic health care, Civic engagement, Mission commitment, Nursing education, Social role of education
Publication Number: 3503124
ISBN: 978-1-267-26595-1
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