31 March 2016

Saudi Arabia, Part 1

HULL, United Kingdom—Absence of a blog post from me for several weeks should not be interpreted to mean that I only write when I am on my travels. Occasionally, I post entries from Hull, where I have been for the past three weeks, but these weeks have been packed with long days, many meetings, learning about new processes, and catching up on supervision of doctoral students. As I remarked to my wife: “It’s almost like having a real job. I’ll be glad to get away for a rest.”

Yours Truly with Mustafa Bedrock.
I have just returned to the UK from Saudi Arabia, the first of three visits scheduled in quick succession. At the invitation of Mustafa Bodrick, PhD, RN, director, Center of Nursing Education, King Abdulaziz Medical City, I have been at the King Saud bin Abdulaziz University for Health Sciences (KSAU-HS), where I attended and presented—keynote, workshop, and plenary—at the 2nd International Conference in Nursing & Health Sciences. We arrived in a dust storm and searing heat, which were followed by torrential rain that cleared the air and cooled things down considerably.

There were about 2,000 delegates at the conference, and I was one of five international speakers, all of whom worked hard each day to fulfill their obligations. I was delighted, for the second time this year, to meet Afaf Meleis, PhD, RN, FAAN, who is now dean emeritus at the University of Pennsylvania School of Nursing. We first met in Tainan, Taiwan. She is sparkling company, and her fluency in Arabic helped us all in several situations.

Yours Truly with local colleagues, Afaf Meleis (in
turquoise), and Shirley Moore (second from left).
I was also glad to renew acquaintance with Janye Smitten, PhD, RN, health administration tutor, Athabasca University, Canada’s Open University and Muntaha Gharaibeh, PhD, RN, former dean of nursing, Jordan University of Science and Technology. I met Smitten the first time a few years ago at the University of Alberta in Edmonton, Canada, and Gharaibeh two years ago in Saudi Arabia. At the conference, I was also very pleased to get to know Shirley Moore, PhD, RN, FAAN, The Edward J. and Louise Mellen Professor of Nursing at Case Western Reserve University, Cleveland, Ohio, USA, and associate dean for research at that school.

I was able to squeeze in a meeting one evening with Ahmad Aboshaiqah, PhD, RN, dean of nursing, King Saud University (KSU), Riyadh, and a prospective doctoral student to discuss admission processes at the University of Hull and the possibility of pioneering an external joint supervision programme between Hull and KSU. There was no great pressure to finalise arrangements, as I will return to KSU at the end of next week. All I have to do between now and then is secure a visa, visit Dublin and Edinburgh, and get back to London Heathrow.

For Reflections on Nursing Leadership (RNL), published by the Honor Society of Nursing, Sigma Theta Tau International. Comments are moderated. Those that promote products or services will not be posted.

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