Academic journal article Nursing Praxis in New Zealand

In Memory of Dr Judith Christensen

Academic journal article Nursing Praxis in New Zealand

In Memory of Dr Judith Christensen

Article excerpt

Dr Judith Christensen recently died at 73, in Hamilton. Judith was a very influential figure throughout her long nursing and education career. She held the position of Head of the School of Nursing at Wellington Polytechnic for twenty years and during this period became the first nurse to graduate from a New Zealand university, Massey, as a Doctor of Philosophy. She published her thesis entitled the Nursing Partnership in 1990. Judith then lectured at Massey University's Albany Campus for several years. In her later years Judith returned to social work, the discipline she had entered as a young woman before switching to nursing.

In the early 1970s Judith gained a Master in Nursing from Magill University in Canada in time to return to New Zealand to lead one of the three pilot nursing education programmes introduced in the polytechnics. She met the challenges of this transitional period when nursing education shifted away from hospital based training with foresight and forthrightness. The programme which was successfully developed under her leadership was innovative and creative. Judith was a quick and courageous thinker, always leading and supporting change within nursing education and advocating for the recognition of nursing education and its modern educational requirements. She worked with aptitude to reengineer the programme from diploma to degree with a range of post graduate options. …

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