Dr. Laura Van Auker’s visit to SONS

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Date and time: 
Mon, 2018-10-29 14:41
Location / Venue: 


University of Nairobi School of Nursing Sciences is seeking collaborations with other universities in line with its vision of being a World Class University. 

Dr. Laura Van Auker, an Assistant Clinical Professor in Health Sciences at the University of California, Davis, Betty Irene Moore School of Nursing paid a visit to the school of nursing sciences. The meeting was held at SONS boardroom on 11th October 2018.

The main objective of the visit was to discuss the possibility of a collaboration between the University of Nairobi and the University of California.

In attendance were the staff of SONS, Master of Science in Nursing students of all specialties in first and second year of study and a former PhD student of the University of California, Davis.

Dr. Laura Van Auker was recently appointed University of California (UC) Davis Global Affairs Faculty Ambassador with the goal of reaching out to health science schools in Kenya to meet and discuss potential mutual collaborations in the area of shared research opportunities, faculty relationships, global inter-professional education and student/faculty exchange potential between our universities.  She is a Nurse Practitioner clinician in Primary Care Family Medicine with a strong interest in rural and underserved communities.  She has been on the advisory board of a USAID/PEPFAR funded Kenyan based NGO, HEART (Health Education Africa Resource Team) for the past 18 years.   In her academic appointment, she is a primary medicine faculty for the post-graduate Family Nurse Practitioner and Physician Assistant programs.  

The UC Davis have a robust health sciences inter-professional education (IPE) program where Dr. Laura currently serves as an Inter-professional Scholar as well as an Active Learning Fellow.  The following link has more information about UC Davis.



The University of California system maintains an affiliate Global Programs research center in Nairobi that UC Davis has recently been invited to collaborate with on Kenyan based projects.

The aim of Dr. Laura’s visit was to seek collaborative opportunities for her research project in IPE that would allow assessment of faculty attitudes to IPE and possible synchronous video meetings between UC Davis and SONS faculty. The meetings will enable the sharing of challenges and solutions to IPE programs.  Other collaborative opportunities include clinical research around community-based care management for the cohort of HIV+ women and their children in the HEART programs.

The meeting

During the meeting, a brief history of the University of Nairobi and the School of Nursing Sciences were presented. In addition, information regarding the University of California Davis, Betty Irene Moore School of Nursing was presented. An alumni of the school of nursing, Mr. Kiragu shared information about the innovation he and his team have come up with on e-fetal monitoring. This was exciting and Dr. Laura promised to share with her colleagues about the possibility of funding the clinical trial of the gadget which is in its formative stage. The opportunities following a likelihood of a collaboration were discussed.

Way forward

This was an initial introductory visit. Discussions will be ongoing which hopefully will be fruitful leading to signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU).


Expiry Date: 
Mon, 2022-10-31 14:41

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