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Published August 17, 2020
Susan Boughn is the recipient of the Fay W. Whitney School of Nursing’s 2020 Distinguished Alumna award at the University of Wyoming for her significant contributions to the profession by promoting excellence in nursing education.
Boughn, who is originally from Wheatland, began her nursing education at UW in 1965. She took the three-year diploma option that was offered by the university at that time. She then received a Bachelor of Science in Nursing at San Jose State University (SJSU) in California in 1973. She earned her Master of Science in Nursing in 1974, also from SJSU. She received an education doctorate at Rutgers University in 1986.
Boughn worked in an emergency clinic and as a public health nurse before becoming a professor at the College of New Jersey in 1979, retiring in 2014.
Boughn has received many awards throughout her career, including the College Faculty Range Program Award for “sustained meritorious work performance and achievement in teaching, scholarship and service.” She also received the New Jersey Professor of the Year Award from the Council for the Advancement and Support of Education, Washington, D.C.; and the Delta Nu Research Award from Sigma Theta Tau International Honor Society of Nursing for three years. Additionally, the Chi Upsilon Sigma National Latin Sorority Inc. recognized Boughn for her support of minority women students.
Boughn co-wrote a book, titled “AIDS: What Every Student Needs to Know”; has published more than 15 articles in refereed journals; and contributed chapters in textbooks. She has presented at many national and regional conferences, both as an invited expert speaker and with competitive refereed presentations. Boughn became a recognized expert on autonomy, developing a tool used nationally in the medical field.
Boughn’s research on women and violence was published in the competitive international Journal of Nursing Scholarship. A related project on trichotillomania -- hair-pulling disorder -- was published in several journals, including an invited contribution to the Psychiatric Times, the trade journal for professional psychiatrists.
Boughn says one of her most “exhilarating career experiences” was an invitation by the Chinese Nursing Association to lecture in the People’s Republic of China in 1987.
“More importantly, Dr. Boughn has touched the lives of many generations of nurses and inspired nursing students with her passion, expertise and dedication to professional nursing,” a nominator wrote for the distinguished alumna award.