Strengthening nurses' political identity through service learning partnerships in education

J N Y State Nurses Assoc. 2003 Fall-2004 Winter;34(2):16-21.


The extent to which nursing students are educationally prepared to lead health policy initiatives is inextricably linked to their political identity. Knowing and showing oneself to be a politic person in interactions with others is a dynamic social process that the authors propose can be facilitated by innovative, community-based service learning partnerships. A partnership between an elected city councilman and Registered Nurses in a baccalaureate-level professional issues course demonstrates how service learning can create a context for students' political socialization. In a pilot study, systematic qualitative research techniques were used to analyze the partners' reflections about their relationship. Findings suggest that students' political identities were developed through involvement in the community. Working on issues of mutual interest also raised policy makers' and nurses' consciousness of the value both groups contribute to addressing problems in urban communities.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Attitude of Health Personnel*
  • Community Health Nursing / education
  • Community Health Nursing / organization & administration
  • Education, Nursing, Baccalaureate / organization & administration*
  • Female
  • Health Policy / legislation & jurisprudence
  • Humans
  • Interinstitutional Relations
  • Middle Aged
  • New York
  • Nurse's Role
  • Nursing Education Research
  • Nursing Methodology Research
  • Pilot Projects
  • Policy Making
  • Politics*
  • Professional Competence / standards
  • Qualitative Research
  • Self Concept*
  • Social Identification*
  • Socialization
  • Students, Nursing / psychology*