Sue O’Donnell is combating a serious workplace issue: bullying.
The effects of workplace bullying can lead to severe health complications ranging from stress and anxiety to post-traumatic stress symptoms, says Dr. O’Donnell.
Dr. O’Donnell, now in her second year as an assistant professor in the faculty of nursing at UNB Fredericton, has a long history with the university. She completed her bachelor of nursing in 2002, her master of nursing in 2009, her PhD in 2014, and is one of 13 inaugural recipients of the reinvigorated Harrison McCain Foundation Young Scholars Award.
In 2016, the Harrison McCain Foundation renewed the Harrison McCain Foundation Awards at UNB with a donation of $1.25 million. This generous gift provides UNB, and faculty members like Dr. O’Donnell, with the tools to deliver world-class research to the province and beyond. For Dr. O’Donnell, the award will further her research by contributing to the cost of hiring a student research assistant, publishing her work and conference travel.
“I feel so fortunate to have had such wonderful mentorship during my time as a graduate student at UNB,” she says. “With the funds I’ve received from the Young Scholars Award, I plan to hire a student research assistant and provide the same level of mentorship.”
Dr. O’Donnell’s research focuses on understanding, preventing and addressing workplace bullying. She is helping to create safer future workplaces by ensuring that her research is accessible to those who need it most.
“Targets of bullying often turn to the Internet to find help, so it is critical that we use these forums to make evidence-based information more widely accessible,” says Dr. O’Donnell.
One example of this is a film that O’Donnell created based on her research with men who were bullied.
Some of the other research fields at UNB recognized by the Harrison McCain Awards include: computer science, engineering, law, history, biology, nursing, sociology, psychology, and forestry and environmental management.
The 2016-17 recipients were recently named, including the inaugural winners of the Harrison McCain Grant in Aid of Scholarly Book Publishing, which provides up to $5,000 in funding to assist faculty with the cost of publishing their research.