Engaging Panel includes Very Special Alumna


Tracy Backstrom

Document Type

News Article

Publication Date


Campus Unit

College of Nursing & Professional Disciplines


Initiated to facilitate student learning about the renal system, the recently held dialysis panel discussion was designed to provide students an interactive experience with the nurses and patients who deal with renal disease on a daily basis. Instructor Raquel Zeidlik, MS, RN, invited one panel member with a very special connection to the Nursing Department.

For more than 40 semester-3 Advanced Nursing Procedures students the panel was an opportunity to learn from the stories of patients, nurses, family members and expert instructors. Included on the panel was alumna Mrs. Lois Kinney (Olsen), who graduated in the first 4-year degree class of what was then called the Division of Nursing at UND. Mrs. Kinney was one of nine who graduated in that first class in 1951, and now 65 years later returned to campus to serve the current class of nursing students sharing her story and experiences as a dialysis patient.

After a presentation by long-time instructor Julie McGauvran about the ins and outs, pros and cons of hemodialysis and peritoneal dialysis, students heard from each panel member about their experiences. Panel members fielded questions and provided an insider’s perspective. In addition to instructor Julie McGauvran and Mrs. Kinney, panel members included Jane Beasley (family/support, CNPD staff), Marlene Hjeldness (current dialysis patient and former transplant patient), and Carey Haugen (nursing faculty and renal nurse expert).

Students seemed quite engaged and asked many questions of the panel. Ms. Zeidlik has received very positive feedback and plans to continue to include these interactive panels in future courses. As for Mrs. Kinney, daughter Jane Beasley reports “Mom said she enjoyed the interaction with the students and learned quite a bit in the process. She loved it!”