PHOTO: Ashley Gresh

Ashley Gresh

Ashley Gresh is the recipient of the Isabel Hampton Robb Scholarship awarded to the doctoral student with the highest evaluation score. Ashley is currently a second-year doctoral student and Global Women’s Health Fellow at Johns Hopkins School of Nursing (JHUSON).

Before entering her nursing career Ashley earned her Bachelor’s of Arts from McGill University and her Master’s in Development Studies from the University of KwaZulu-Natal. Ashley worked as an analyst for the Clinton Foundation HIV/AIDS Initiative in Rwanda and as a research fellow at the University of KwaZulu-Natal focusing on sexual and reproductive health before entering nursing. When Ashley was conducting research in South Africa, she realized that she was missing something crucial to the work she was doing in women’s sexual and reproductive health, and that was clinical knowledge and expertise. She sought to fill this gap in her knowledge and skills by completing her Bachelor’s of Science in Nursing at JHUSON and continuing on in her education to become an advanced practice public health nurse with a Master’s of Science in Nursing degree from JHUSON and then becoming a Certified Nurse-Midwife with a post-master’s certificate in Midwifery from Shenandoah University. Ashley worked as a community health nurse in East Baltimore, and trained to become a midwife in Paradise, California.

Entering the PhD program at JHUSON, Ashley’s goal is to become a nurse researcher and leader to further the profession and advocate for nurses globally, focusing on midwifery and community health. Ashley believes her doctoral education will prepare her well to employ innovative research strategies to transform practice and improve the lives of women and families globally. Ashley’s proposed dissertation study will adapt and implement a model of group postpartum/well-child care in Malawi. Ashley chose to focus her dissertation on postpartum and well-child care because this is an area that has been neglected in research. It is a crucial time period for both women and infants and sets the stage for long-term health. Ashley believes this model of care has the potential to impact the nursing profession globally and transform how we deliver postpartum/well-child care to ultimately improve maternal and child health outcomes.

Ashley’s long-term career goals are to continue teaching and build a program of research as a nurse scientist to conceive, implement and evaluate interventions on maternal and child health outcomes; disseminate her research findings widely to ultimately transform policy and practice; and to become a leading member of programs of research targeting maternal and child health outcomes in the US and globally.

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