Donna Murnaghan, RN, MN, PhD, is one of two founding faculty members at the University of Prince Edward Island’s school of nursing. As a nurse educator with 35 years of experience, her expertise in curriculum development and nursing knowledge have been instrumental to the development of both undergraduate and graduate programs. Dr. Murnaghan is known for her high standards of excellence in nursing knowledge, which translate into the quality of the school’s graduates. As acting dean of nursing, she saw the opening of a new UPEI school of nursing and the province’s first master of nursing program.
Her program of research in the area of prevention has been recognized locally and nationally for its expertise in school health research, wellness promotion and knowledge exchange systems. By using upstream thinking and working with youth, Dr. Murnaghan and her team are identifying new ways to prevent youth from adopting unhealthy behaviors that lead to chronic disease and an increased burden on our health system.
As the former director of the PEI Health Research Institute, she played a key role in developing, enhancing and supporting high-caliber health research capacity in the province.
Dr. Murnaghan’s professional and community service speaks to her commitment to the advancement of nursing and health systems. As president of the PEI division of Canadian Cancer Society, she chaired the development of the first cancer control strategy. As a founding member of the National Collaborating Center on the Determinants of Health, she helped create improved best-practice tools and resources for public health nursing. As a member of the board for Health PEI, she has been instrumental in helping to lead the changes to one integrated Island health system based on quality that meets the essential needs of Islanders.