Community Health Corner: Nurses eager to learn more after December Duke-Johnson & Johnson retreat

Tuesday, January 13, 2015
By Lashanda Willis, JD

Last month, the Duke-Johnson & Johnson Nurse Leadership Program hosted its mid-year leadership development retreat at the R. David Thomas Executive Conference Center, located on Duke University’s campus. Twenty-eight program fellows, along with program staff and faculty, project coaches, advisory board members and retreat presenters, attended the four-day retreat from Dec. 13 to 16.

The Duke-Johnson & Johnson Nurse Leadership Program gives advanced practice nurses an opportunity to gain leadership and management skills needed to cultivate and lead nurse-managed health care settings. The program offers distanced-based learning opportunities, along with three onsite leadership retreats per program year.

The Duke-Johnson & Johnson Nurse Leadership Program is an educational program of the Division of Community Health.

During the retreat

The December retreat offered various professional development sessions and workshops tailored toward providing advanced practice nurses with the skills needed to become change agents for optimal health outcomes and well-being for their patients and communities.

Presenters focused on topics that revolved around the theme of “finding and strengthening your voice as a leader.” Session topics included team development for nurse leaders, change management, health policy advocacy, preventing burnout, public speaking, presentation skills, writing, and much more.

The fellows had the opportunity to engage with presenters about the content covered, and the general feedback was that the fellows found the lectures very insightful and were eager to learn more.

During the retreat, the Duke-Johnson & Johnson Nurse Leadership Program also hosted a dinner and reception at the University Club in Durham for program fellows, project coaches, program faculty, staff and retreat presenters. The program also offered optional activities such as yoga sessions, integrative health services at Duke Integrative Medicine, and suggested local events for fellows to visit during their free time.

About the program fellows

The 2014-15 cohort includes 24 females and four males. Program fellows reside in 17 of 50 states in the United States. The 2014-15 program fellows began the program in May 2014 and will complete the program in June 2015.

Duke-Johnson & Johnson Nurse Leadership Program will welcome its new cohort of nurse fellows during its next onsite retreat, scheduled for May 31-June 3.

Applications accepted

Duke-Johnson & Johnson Nurse Leadership Program is accepting applications through Jan. 15 for the 2015-16 cohort of nurse fellows.

To learn more about the program and application process, visit the Duke-Johnson & Johnson Nurse Leadership Program website.

Lashanda Willis, JD, earned a bachelor of science in business administration from the University of Pittsburgh, and received her juris doctor from Southern University Law Center. She obtained a license to practice law in the State of Alabama. Lashanda has worked with underserved populations in various capacities, ranging from outreach and volunteer work to education and advocacy. Lashanda assisted the Duke-Johnson & Johnson Nurse Leadership Program staff with planning the December retreat. Contact her at

Editor’s note: Community Health Corner provides an update on the latest happenings with the Division of Community Health’s educational programs. Community Health Corner appears once a month.