Yvonne L. Munn Center for Nursing Research

Excellence Every Day


click here

PCS Home Page Nursing Chaplaincy Institute for Patient Care Occupational Therapy Orthotics & Prosthetics Physical Therapy Respiratory Care Services Social Service Speech Language & Swallowing Disorders Clinical Resources MGH Internal Access Only
Patient Care Services


The Connell Nursing Research Scholars Program


The Connell Nursing Research Scholars (CNRS) program is a Post-Doctoral 18-month research intensive experience, designed to promote the advancement of interdisciplinary patient/family care at the Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH) through nursing research. The Connell Nursing Research Scholars invited to participate in this program will have dedicated time each week to advance a research agenda consistent with strategic goals of MGH Patient Care Services and their personal research focus. Ultimately, having time devoted to the conduct of research and clinical investigation will enable each scholar to actively publish, expand research expertise, seek and obtain external funding to develop, implement, evaluate and translate nursing research to impact patient/family care outcomes at the MGH and beyond.

Connell Nursing Research Scholars will work over the course of 18 months to build nursing science through the investigation of issues that influence the delivery of cost effective, safe, efficient, high-quality patient/family-centric care as well as care redesign and health policy. Participation in the CNRS program as an Early or Mid–Career Nurse Researcheroffers each scholar the time and active mentoring needed to generate and disseminate knowledge to advance interdisciplinary health care for all.

  • An Early-Career Connell Nursing Research Scholar is a novice nurse researcher at the beginning of a research career. Beyond completion of the doctoral dissertation, this scholar will have preliminary research findings and publications in an area of interest that can be promoted through mentorship and funding. The Early-Career CNRS will be encouraged to generate publications early in their CNRS experience. Publications, especially those emanating from their dissertation, will be critical to establishing a track record of scholarship around an area of research investigation, and seek funding to continue building a platform of research.   
  • An advanced/Mid-Career Connell Nursing Research Scholaris a more experienced nurse researcher, with a clear program of research, previous research funding and disseminated research findings through publications and presentations at national and international meetings. The Mid-Career CNRS will be encouraged to build upon previous research and scholarship to expand existing research, and/or generate new areas of inquiry stemming from previous scholarly efforts.

A. Research Priorities
Established and emerging programs of research that focus on the priorities listed below and are congruent with organizational strategic goals will be given funding preference for selection as a scholar within the CNRS program. These priorities include:

  • Care of the elderly, (including the hospitalized elderly as well as those living in the community).
  • Patient and family experiences and end of life care.
  • Workforce development (e.g. implementation and evaluation of delivery models,  evaluating nurse-patient satisfaction). 
  • Creative interventions that decrease risk and improve symptom management (e.g. hospital acquired infections and pressure injuries, reduction in falls and improved pain management).
  • Development and testing of measures (e.g. nurse sensitive instruments) to evaluate care outcomes.
  • Clinical Decision Making and documentation of Nursing Practice
  • Generation, testing, and evaluation of theoretical models that can be used to guide nursing practice and advance nursing science.
  • The ethics of care.
  • Diversity, inclusion, and equity in the workplace.
  • Other research proposals consistent with the strategic goals of Nursing and PCS and The Institute for Patient Care will be considered.


B. Connell Nursing Research Scholars Program Objectives and Methods

  • Develop knowledge to advance patient care through research
    • Design a plan and timeline to address the implementation and related activities of the CNRS appointment.
    • Identify personal learning objectives along with strategies to achieve goals and potential outcomes resulting from the appointment.
    • Participate in regular meetings with program advisor and external mentors.
    • Attend MGH research programs including Harvard Catalyst meetings and other MGHB research programs that focus on methods and process as dictated by research projects(s).
    • Participate in Nursing Research Grand Rounds and other activities within MGH and MGHB to share research activities with other scholars (e.g. Clinical Research Programs and Committees).
    • Seek a Harvard clinical appointment.
  • Become proficient in the conduct of research within clinical practice
    • Explore national funding opportunities (e.g., RWJ Foundation, NIH, specialty organizations and foundations). Review guidelines with mentor.
    • Submit application(s) for external funding at the completion of the CRNS Program. 
    • Prepare a concept paper and review with CNRS program faculty.
    • Prepare and justify budget; meet with Grant Manager.
    • Develop review of the literature for publication of science and design methodology for study; seek expert statistical consultation around methodology and design.
    • Consult with Program Advisor, Munn Research Center Team Members, and External Faculty mentors on a regular basis to advance research plan.
    • Consider the development of a research team as you advance your work.
    • Consult with statistician as needed.
    • Attend CE programs offered on research design and methodology within the MGHB system.
  • Become an active participant in facilitation and translation of research into practice
    • Collaborate with MGH committee members involved in the promotion and dissemination of research (e.g. research/EBP committee, Doctoral Forum, Research Grand Rounds, Nursing Research Day). 
    • Participate on external review panels (e.g. ENRS Abstract Review Committee, CANS Review, National review panels)
    • Attend the Clinical Practice Research Interest Group (RIG), present at ENRS and other organizational meetings
    • Present at Grand Rounds/Journal Club, ECORE, etc.
    • Mentor other staff around the research process and consider potential inclusion in research projects.
    • Work with Interdisciplinary team grant submissions (e.g. Clinical Innovations Awards, Harvard Catalyst).
  • Participate in Forums at the MGH and beyond to Disseminate Research
    • ENRS – RIG’s (e.g. Clinical Practice and Research), NIH NINR, and Specialty Review Groups.
    • Present knowledge gained through scholarly inquiry at national and international meetings.
    • Disseminate research activities to advance new knowledge and patient care (e.g. abstract submissions at nursing and Interdisciplinary meetings, nationally and globally).
    • Attend CANS/other specialty research meetings.
    • Publish work in peer reviewed journals and other journals specific to research interest(s).
    • Assume leadership roles in local, national and international groups dedicated to advancing knowledge through research.
    • Mentor other staff and emerging researchers.

C.  Connell Nursing Research Scholars Program Structure
The Connell Nursing Research Scholars will be supported over an 18 month period and actively engage in Post-Doctoral nursing research.  

  • During year the 18 months CNRS experience Early-Career or Advanced/Mid-Career Connell Nurse Research Scholars (CNRS) will engage in research activities for 16 hours per week. Each scholar will review their research trajectory with the Program Advisor, attend seminars and establish a timeline for developing a research plan that includes publications and dissemination as well as a plan for accessing external funding.
  • Each Scholar will attend regularly scheduled mentoring meetings with Program Advisor and/or faculty mentor to develop, review and refine research plan and related activities.
  • Each Scholar will attend the PhD-DNP Research Forum on a regular basis.
  • Scholars will be able to consult with past CNRS Scholars to discuss their research, etc. 


D. Mentorship and Development

  • Program Advisor – The Program Advisor is a seasoned scholar with a wide range of experiences including organizational leadership; a funded research (i.e. a principal Investigator/Director for foundation, NIH, HRSA etc. grants); a research mentor for selected projects (including dissertations, research projects, grant reviewer) and a well-published scholar having presented in both national and international forums. The Program Advisor is able to link research to nursing science theory and concepts, the organizational mission of MGH along with national research agendas and mentor to the CNRSs, assisting scholars with the development of a research plan. The advisor conducts weekly meetings with each scholar along with monthly research seminars; with the CNRS and facilitates team development; generates resources for grant preparation; hold meetings with program faculty and advisory board members; monitors the programs implementation and periodically evaluate scholars and program outcomes.
  • Biostatistician/Methodologist – assists scholars with the research design and methodological analysis throughout the scholar’s involvement in CNRS program. During year one, statistical consultation should be factored into the proposed research plan for each scholar. The selection of statistical consultation will be based on the individuals experience, methodological expertise and scholarship.
  • Mentor Selection – each CNRS will be asked to select an external mentor whose research complements the work of the scholar and who has achieved national recognition for the advancement of specialized knowledge through research. National appointments (e.g., AAN), honors, publication record and funding can help guide the selection of an external faculty mentors. A small honorarium will be provided for each external faculty mentor. It is anticipated that such a collaboration will enhance grant applications, increased shared publications and offer other research opportunities as the program progresses in the CNRS’s area of research. Selection of external faculty mentors will occur early CNRS’s appointment, in consultation with the Program Advisor and CNRS.

E. CNRS Program Faculty

  • Program Advisor - Dr. Dorothy Jones EdD, RN, FAAN, FNI, Yvonne L. Munn Center for Nursing Research Director Emerita and Senior Nurse Scientist.
  • Content or method experts

F. (Suggested) CNRS Advisory selection Committee:

  • Colleen K. Snydeman, PhD, RN, Executive Director, Patient Care Services, Office of Quality, Practice, Innovation & Nursing Research, and Inaugural MGH Endowed Scholar in Nursing Practice
  • Member of the Connell family
  • Former recipient (s) of the CNRS
  • Physician  interdisciplinary collaboration
  • Staff in Munn Center
  • Dr. Dorothy Jones

G. Connell CNRS Application and requirements to include:

  • Submission of a goal statement (up to three to five typewritten pages, APA format, Times New Roman font, 12 point, 1.5 spacing). Statement to reflect on how the Connell Nurse Research Scholars Program will advance your program of research and contribute new knowledge to advancing the strategic goals at the MGH, the national research agenda, the IOM Future of Nursing Report (2020) and beyond.
    • Identification of your evolving goals for CNRS program
    • Area of research concentration (Focus of inquiry)
    • Proposed research question(s)
    • Publications that support area of research interest to date
    • Completion of Connell Nursing Research Scholars Application
  • Demonstrated commitment at the beginning or advanced/mid-career to research as evidenced by a dissertation, scholarly work, other grant funding and presentations at national and international meetings
    • Preparation for this research as a Beginning or Mid-Career Connell Research Scholar;
    • Congruence of research with goals of MGH/PCS and the Institute for Patient Care;
    • Role research can play in advancing cost effective, patient/family centric, safe, efficient care;
    • Opportunities for funding and congruence of planned research with national and international funding goals;
    • Impact of research on clinical practice, nursing knowledge, care redesign, policy and impact on nurse-led, interdisciplinary health care delivery models focusing on health promotion and prevention, and quality of life
  • External Mentor Selection – include name and related information (e.g. Brief Bio sketch) and briefly discuss the alignment between your research interest(s) and that of the proposed Mentors.

H. Timeline

1. Description of the timeline for completion of the CNRS, with milestones indicated to include progress toward submission of grant application over the time of the Connell Nursing Research Scholar’s funding period

2. Progress Reporting: Connell Nursing Research Scholars will submit progress reports at designated intervals following the initial appointment. A summary report of your Connell Nursing Research Scholar will be requested at the completion of the experience.

3. Included in the Timeline:

  • Mentor Meetings: Proposed frequency
  • Seminars (monthly)
  • External Meetings: suggestions
  • Faculty Mentor meetings
  • Other: Include most current Curriculum Vitae


To APPLY for the grant, click on the following link:


PCS Home | Chaplaincy | Excellence Every Day Portal | Institute for Patient Care | Nursing | Occupational Therapy | Orthotics & Prosthetics | Physical Therapy

Respiratory Care | Social Service | Nursing | Speech Language Swallowing Disorders | Clinical Resources | Search PCS | Contact PCS

MGH Home Page | MGH Intranet | MassGeneral Hospital for Children | Partners Healthcare

Massachusetts General Hospital 55 Fruit Street, Boston MA 02114 / (617) 726-2000 / TDD: 617-724-8800