Challenges and strategies of early career nurse scientists when the traditional postdoctoral fellowship is not an option

Academic Article


  • Purpose: The purpose of this article is to discuss challenges and strategies related to maintaining a program of research for early career nurse scientists. Nurse scientists who do not complete a traditional postdoctoral fellowship or who work in low research-resourced institutions may struggle with research collaboration and development. Principal results: Specific challenges experienced by nurse scientists in early career development included: advanced age at the completion of the research doctorate, gender roles and research careers, sustainable work-life balance, employment in low research-resourced institutions, and time. Strategies to assist nurse scientists in finding support and opportunities for research and career development included: professional networking, institutional collaboration, non-traditional training experiences for new nurse scientists, sustainable work-life balance, professional development and service, and competing needs of teaching mission and research. One group's experience with fostering support and collaboration is presented as an example. Major conclusions: It is possible for nurse scientists in low research-resourced institutions to find opportunities to develop their program of research and foster their professional growth. Implementing the identified strategies helps to provide sustainability of new nurse scientists' research efforts. Engaging nurse scientists in supportive and collaborative opportunities paves the way for early career nurse scientists to become experts in their field.
  • Published In

    Digital Object Identifier (doi)

    Author List

  • Rice M; Davis SL; Soistmann HC; Johnson AH; Gray L; Turner-Henson A; Lynch T
  • Start Page

  • 462
  • End Page

  • 468
  • Volume

  • 36
  • Issue

  • 6