Occupational and Environmental Health Training Grant


NYU Meyers College of Nursing is part of the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health-funded NY/NJ Education and Research Center (T42-OH-008422), where we have a training program in occupational and environmental health nursing (OEHN). The purpose of the PhD/DNP OEHN training program is to prepare nurse leaders in OEHN. We prepare nurse scientists (PhD) to conduct interdisciplinary occupational and environmental health-focused research that will advance nursing science, inform clinical practice, and influence the education of future nursing professionals. Our DNP graduates are prepared to provide evidence-based advanced practice clinical care in OEHN, lead interdisciplinary healthcare teams in occupational health and safety, and educate future practitioners in OEHN. 


OEHN PhD trainees will successfully complete at least 12 credits in occupational and environmental health coursework. Use three DNP elective course credits in an OEHN course delivered by NYU Meyers faculty who are experts in the field.
Complete a dissertation focused on an OEHN topic e.g. workplace exposures, workforce issues, safety. Focus the DNP Project on a clinical question related to occupational and/or environmental health in the workplace. OEHN DNP trainees will complete at least 200 clinical hours in OEHN nursing as part of the 400 hour DNP clinical hour requirement.
Participate in interdisciplinary journal club, field trips, and other OEHN-related experiences and scholarly activities. Participate in interdisciplinary journal club, field trips, and other OEHN-related experiences and scholarly activities.



  • Financial support
  • One-on-one mentorship from expert faculty and practitioners
  • Intraprofessional learning with NYU Meyers DNP and PhD students
  • Interprofessional collaboration and experiences with students across the NY/NJ Education and Research Center

Meet the 2021 - 2022 OEHN Trainees:

PhD Students

Vanessa Caiazzo headshotVanessa Caiazzo, MPH, RN   

Research interest: Examining ways to make healthcare a healthier career option by preventing burnout and injury.



Natalie Hellmers headshotNatalie Hellmers, MSN, ACNP-BC, RN

Research interest: Adults returning to work with a new neurological diagnosis 




Kathryn Leep-Lazar headshot

Kathryn Leep-Lazar, BSN, RN

Research Interests: Nursing burnout, nursing turnover, and occupational health of nurses 





Halia Melnyk headshot

Halia Melnyk, MPH, RN

Research interest: The use of systems approaches to examine factors influencing health and work-related outcomes in working women with cancer



Malie Mercer headshotMaile Mercer MSN, RN, CCRN
Research interests: burnout prevention, secondary-trauma exposure and effective resilience training in nurses and student nurses.





DNP Students

Le-Jeune Sealey-Horsford headshotLe-Jeune Sealey-Horsford MS, FNP-BC, NP-C, RNC-MNN





Jenni Duc Nguyen headshotJenni Duc Nguyen, MSN, FNP-B





Yvelande Couamin headshotYvelande Couamin FNP





Ganesh RamGanesh Ram AGPCNP-BC





Now accepting DNP trainees

Past Trainees

Jin Jun headshotJin Jun, PhD, MSN, RN, CCRN

Dissertation title: The relationship between nursing unit-level organizational culture and the use of evidence-based practice among nurses in hospitals



Melissa Ojemeni headshotMelissa T. Ojemeni, PhD, MA, RN, PCCN

Dissertation title: Comparative policy responses to managing international nurse migration to the United States and United Kingdom from 2004 - 2014



Shani Irby headshot

Shani Irby, DNP, MSN, ANP-BC

DNP project proposal title: Educational outreach visits to improve the implementation and adherence to a treatment template for patients with an occupational and environmental exposure related cancer being treated in an ambulatory oncology setting


Mimi Niles headshot

Mimi Niles, PhD, CNM, MPH

Dissertation title: Relationship-Centered Midwifery Care: A case study of midwives working in an urban public hospital




Laura Ridge headshotLaura Ridge, PhD, ANP-BC, AAHIVE

Dissertation title: A case study of how task-shifting influences the intellectual capital of nursing in Liberia




Lauren Ghazal headshotLauren Ghazal, PhD, FNP-BC

Dissertation title: Exploring Multilevel Factors Influencing Quality of Life in Young Adult Cancer Survivors: A Mixed Methods Approach





PhD Students and faculty stand in front of their poster presentation.
Students and faculty attended the 2017 NJ/NY ERC Scientific Research Day at Mt. Sinai School of Medicine.
L to R Prof. Victoria Vaughan Dickson, Program Director, Jin Jun, Mimi Niles, Prof. Amy Witkoski Stimpfel, Program Deputy Director, Melissa Ojemeni
Mimi Niles and Laura Ridge present a poster
 2018 Annual Scientific Research Day at Mt. Sinai School of Medicine, (L-R), Mimi Niles and Laura Ridge present a poster on behalf of all the nursing trainees
Jin Jun in immersion suit
Trainees attend the annual ERC Historical Tour of occupational sites. Jin Jun, PhD, RN gets practice using an immersion suit in the Maine harbor. 
2019 NJ/NY ERC Scientific Research Day at Mt. Sinai School of Medicine
2019 NJ/NY ERC Scientific Research Day at Mt. Sinai School of Medicine. (L-R PhD students Vanessa Caiazzo, Halia Melnyk, Natalie Hellmers, Lauren Ghazal, and faculty Dr. Vicky Dickson)

Congrats Grads

2018 Graduates

PhD graduates Jin Jun Melissa Ojemeni at graduation

PhD graduate Jin Jun being hooded at graduation

2019 Graduates

Shani Irby speaking at graduation

















2021 Graduates

Lauren Ghazal in her graduation attire
















Program Director: Victoria Vaughan Dickson
Deputy Director: Amy Witkoski Stimpfel