The RPNF’s mission is to support Psychiatric Nursing excellence through annual scholarships to psychiatric nursing students and RPNs in Canada who are pursuing undergraduate, graduate, and doctoral level studies.
John Charles Bressand English 1937-2022
Our friend and colleague John English passed away on Tuesday, 20th September, 2022. John will be well remembered for his contribution to psychiatric nursing education in Manitoba. He was the director of the School of Psychiatric Nursing at Selkirk for almost six years before he became the first instructor of psychiatric nursing at the new Department of Nursing and Health Studies at Brandon University in 1987, where Canada’s first baccalaureate degree in psychiatric nursing was offered. He handled with characteristic aplomb the fact that he was the first male in the department, and only wore white shoes after Labour Day to good naturedly tease the female instructors.
He was a pioneer of university education for psychiatric nurses serving in a number of capacities at BU and building the post-diploma Bachelor of Science in Mental Health (BScMH) from the ground up. When the four-year baccalaureate in psychiatric nursing (BScPN) was introduced in 1994 at BU (again a first in Canada) he was key figure. Many who took either of these programmes at BU will remember his wit, charm, and English accent as well as his wisdom in the inevitable challenges that faced a new programme and new faculty. He performed many other tasks at BU but his contribution to psychiatric nursing is what he will be most remembered for. Some may also recall the fabulous dinner parties he and his wife Carol hosted at their home west of Brandon.
John leaves to mourn him his wife Carol, daughter Sarah and her husband Brent, son Ethan and his wife Janet, two granddaughters and two grandsons.
The Celebration of John’s Life will take place at St. George’s Anglican Church, 1011 – 5th Street, Brandon on Monday, September 26, 2022 at 11:00 a.m. with The Rev. Jonathan Hoskin officiating. A reception will follow. For those not able to attend in person, the service will be webcast on John’s memorial page at www.memorieschapel.com. Donations in memory of John may be made to CNIB Guide Dogs, 354 – 10th Street, Brandon, MB R7A 4G1.
RPNF 2023 Scholarships and Grants
Application Period open now until January 15, 2023
Congratulations to Amber Lynes, recipient of the RPNF’s 2022 John Kellie Scholarship (awarded to a 3rd year student in the baccalaureate program at Brandon University, with a minimum GPA of 3.0). For the past 4 years, Ms. Lynes has been employed as a respite worker with individuals who experience intellectual and physical disabilities, honing relationship-building skills and focusing on interventions supporting individuals to thrive in their daily lives. She has also volunteered at the Clubhouse in Winnipeg for the past two years, engaging in mental health rehabilitation interventions. Ms. Lynes feels that her work in these areas contributes directly to her future career goals given their relevance to psychiatric nursing. Ms. Lynes’ goal is to work in the addictions field, assisting individuals dealing with substance use disorders. She points out that substance use is becoming an increasingly significant problem in society, highlighting its co-occurrence with many mental illnesses. Ms. Lynes notes that this area of specialty is of personal interest to her, and advises that she would like to be a part of developing the required supports and services.
Congratulations to Riley Hammond, recipient of the RPNF’s 2022 Annette Thorimbert Osted Scholarship (awarded to a 3rd or 4th year student with a minimum GPA of 3.0, enrolled in a baccalaureate psychiatric nursing education program in Canada). Mr. Hammond’s work history includes facilitating programs at the John Howard Society of Brandon at the Men’s Resource Centre where services support a psychosocial model to person-centered recovery for individuals experiencing social health challenges in the community. Mr. Hammond also works as a research assistant for the Centre for Critical Studies of Rural Mental Health and the Faculty of Health Studies. Mr. Hammond volunteers as Vice-President with the Brandon University Health Studies Students Association, supporting students through advocacy, communications, and committee involvement. Mr. Hammond has appreciated the many opportunities to meaningfully contribute to the social fabric of the community. Mr. Hammond’s psychiatric nursing career goals include advocating for, and implementation of a supervised injection site in Manitoba, practicing mental health nursing in a forensic assertive community treatment context, pursuing graduate studies in public health with specialization in health policy and global health, and striving to support health equity for marginalized populations
Congratulations to Kayla Webb, recipient of the RPNF’s 2022 John Alex Crawford Scholarship (awarded to a graduate psychiatric nurse, registered in Canada who is pursuing relevant studies at a masters or doctoral level). Ms. Webb’s research explores experiences in foundational psychiatric nursing education that RPN’s have found to be meaningful in managing their personal and emotional response to trauma in the clinical setting. Through the identification of experiences that aid in the emotional management of exposure to traumatic experiences, Ms. Webb believes that more efficacious preventative measures can be integrated into undergraduate nursing education, indirectly promoting higher quality patient care and improving the quality of life of mental health nurses. It is hoped that curriculum content and training can be identified to assist psychiatric nurses to effectively manage personal and emotional responses to trauma experienced through practice. Ms. Webb anticipates that her research will further the available literature specific to RPNs in the Canadian context, and inspire future enquiry on the specific experience of Registered Psychiatric Nurses, thereby reducing personal health concerns for RPNs entering the discipline
Congratulations to Shelby Eng, recipient of the 2022 RPNF Award of Excellence for Clinical Practice. Shelby is also past recipient of the RPNF Medal of Excellence upon graduation in 2020. Shelby “exemplifies the standard of psychiatric nursing excellence” in her work on an adult inpatient psychiatric unit. Person-centred engagement and rapport-building are key to Shelby’s approach. She considers the individual’s needs to be her highest priority while calmly and creatively determining best interventions. Shelby maintains a positive perspective even in the most challenging situations. She is an advocate for those she serves, and ensures that services are provided in an ethical manner. Shelby is frequently a recipient of positive feedback and gestures from individuals with whom she has worked. She is a leader among team members, contributing to team morale and providing support and assistance when her peers need help. Shelby is an “asset to mental health programs in Manitoba” continually striving to “create positive system change”.
Congratulations to Melanie Ogden, recipient of the RPNF 2022 Award of Excellence for Clinical Practice. Melanie Ogden embodies excellence in clinical practice through her work as a psychiatric nurse on an adult acute psychiatric unit. Ms. Ogden is a caring and dedicated psychiatric nurse who is known for her authentic, genuine approach with individuals, families, and colleagues. She is respectful of all and is willing to do “the right thing even when it is the hard thing to do”. Her clinical skills are exemplary, and she leads by supporting and sharing knowledge with students as their preceptor, and with her co-workers. She is an advocate, ensuring a high standard of service and safety for the individuals she serves, as well as her colleagues. Ms. Ogden is highly regarded on the team and brings positivity into the workplace. She is a role model for psychiatric nurses, thereby promoting excellence in the clinical practice of others as well.
Congratulations to Evana Popovich, recipient of the 2022 RPNF Gold Medal of Excellence (Winnipeg Campus). The RPNF Medal of Excellence is awarded annually to two graduating students from the Bachelor of Science in Psychiatric Nursing Program at Brandon University who have consistently demonstrated values of safe, competent and ethical practice through leadership, academic excellence and clinical proficiency.
Congratulations to Riley Hammond, recipient of the 2022 RPNF Gold Medal of Excellence (Brandon Campus). The RPNF Medal of Excellence is awarded annually to two graduating students from the Bachelor of Science in Psychiatric Nursing Program at Brandon University who have consistently demonstrated values of safe, competent and ethical practice through leadership, academic excellence and clinical proficiency.
2022 Award Recipients
Award of Excellence for Clinical Practice – Shelby Eng
Award of Excellence for Clinical Practice – Melanie Ogden
2022 Brandon University, B.Sc.P.N. Gold Medals
Winnipeg Campus – Evana Popovich
Brandon Campus – Riley Hammond
2022 Scholarship Recipients
John Kellie Scholarship – Amber Lynes
Annette Thorimbert Osted Scholarship – Riley Hammond
John Alex Crawford Scholarship – Kayla Webb
2021 RPNF First Virtual Scholarships & Awards Reception
The first virtual RPNF Scholarships & Awards Reception was held on May 12, 2021, celebrating the RPNF’s 2021 Scholarships and Awards Recipients. Please see the following link to view the video recording. Use of headphones is recommended as some video speeches are low in volume.
The RPNF seeks energetic individuals with creative ideas on promoting the Foundation’s mission for our psychiatric nursing scholarships and awards!
Politics, Personalities, and Persistence
One Hundred Years of Psychiatric Nursing Education in Manitoba by Beverley Clare Williams Hicks
Politics, Personalities and Persistence, written by RPNF Director Dr. Beverley Hicks tells the story of the evolution of registered psychiatric nursing in the province of Manitoba. This comprehensive account traces the distinct profession’s transition from the asylums of Manitoba, where for seventy years psychiatric nurses had cared for the mentally ill when few others were interested in them, to the halls of academia in Brandon University in 1986, the first university in Canada to grant a baccalaureate degree to psychiatric nurses. Contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information and to order. A portion of proceeds from the book will be donated to the RPNF Inc.