Now and Forever
Oncology Nursing

. :  2019 Chapter Champions

The OND Chapter Champion recognition is provided by the local chapter to an active CANO/ACIO member who has worked in his/her city or institution to advance oncology nursing. This is administered by the chapter and is meant to recognize local contributions.

If you know a CANO/ACIO nurse who best exemplifies the theme this year: “Oncology Nursing: Celebrating our Diversity” / << Soins infirmiers en oncologie : Célébrons notre diversité >> please click here to nominate them as an OND Chapter Champion!

Alberta South Chapter Champion: Tracy Powell

Tracy Powell never realized it at the time, but her experiences while in the Bachelor of Nursing program at Western University (1993-1996) would significantly shape her personal and professional goals. Her exposure to the diversity of oncology while a nursing student, and due to personal circumstances, indeed influenced her passion for oncology nursing and cancer care. Her time while an undergraduate student also helped her to understand the importance of professional connections, and the value of learning from others who have had different life experiences.

Tracy began her oncology nursing career on an inpatient hematology/oncology unit at University Hospital in London, Ontario where her final clinical practicum framed her desire to practice in an oncology setting. Her trajectory “in the challenging, diverse, and rewarding” area of oncology nursing and cancer care eventually evolved to include many different roles at several outpatient cancer centres across Canada. Tracy also realized the value of oncology nursing communities early in her career and became closely involved with the Alberta South Chapter of CANO/ACIO as the Education Coordinator (2000-2001), President (2006-2009), and continues to be engaged to this day.

Following completion of her Masters of Nursing from the University of Calgary (2002-2006), where she researched ‘Information ources utilized by men during decision-making on treatment for prostate cancer’ after questioning how the men she worked with in clinical trials managed their decisions, Tracy shifted her career toward undergraduate nursing education by becoming an Associate Professor in the School of Nursing and Midwifery (2006-present) at Mount Royal University (MRU) in Calgary, Alberta. Although no longer providing direct patient care, as a nurse academic, Tracy continues her focus in oncology as a faculty mentor and by highlighting oncology nursing and cancer care with undergraduate nursing students at all levels in the program. 

Tracy has also championed oncology nursing with nursing students by increasing access to Alberta South Chapter education events, developing the community of practice- Students Interested in Oncology Nursing (SION) at MRU (2013-present), and generating a learning activity in the Bachelor of Nursing program to enable first-year nursing students to attend an observation experience in an outpatient oncology setting. This activity is unique for this level of education and enabled gained perspectives and understanding of individuals with diverse health and life contexts. Research of this experiential learning activity revealed that it may provide an opportunity for pre-licensure students to gain new and distinct perspectives about cancer, cancer care, and nurses’ roles in caring for individuals and families who are impacted by cancer; and was published in collaboration with former nursing students in the Winter 2019 edition of CONJ.

Tracy is a Chapter Champion who focuses on diverse ways in which future nurses can find their passion for oncology nursing and cancer care. As one of Tracy’s former student’s states, “As a first-year nursing student in Tracy’s class, I entered and left the classroom with completely altered ideas of not only what area of nursing piqued my interest, but also how nurses can make a difference in people’s lives. I sought mentorship from Tracy after her high praise of oncology nurses lead me to wonder how I could begin to explore the field myself. Tracy provided me with numerous outlets to explore my oncology interest; one being the Canadian Association of Nurses in Oncology. This connection provided me with countless career opportunities, which Tracy has supported me through. I will forever be grateful that I happened to be in her nursing class, I know without a doubt my nursing career will be forever changed because of it” (S. Quinn, MRU nursing alumni).

Ontario – Toronto Chapter Champion: Philiz Goh

Philiz Goh’s passion for oncology nursing has been boundless. As a student nurse she published a patient and family information booklet that dealt with managing bone metastases. She was also the first student member on the executive of the Greater Toronto Chapter of Oncology Nurses (GTCON), a role which was the first of its kind in Canada. As a past president of GTCON she was responsible for creating a model of partnership with our industry partners that generated 10 educational sessions annually for Oncology Nurses across the GTA. She is a lifelong learner whose commitment to the facilitation of learning for others, particularly her peers and colleagues, is evident in her consistent involvement with the creation of educational material and as editor for 2 editions of a guide to bone metastases for interprofessional health care teams.  She is a leader at the forefront of nursing who has presented (poster and oral), at work, nationally and internationally on topics such as nursing practice with surgical sites, the role of radiation nurses and infection prevention and control, amongst others. At work, she was a past co-chair of the corporate nursing council insuring that the voice of nursing was prominent in the development of policy that impacted nursing practice. She led the team to work locally on organizing CANO/ACIO National Conference in Toronto. Under her guidance over $12,000 was raised and one of the largest groups of volunteers was gathered to support the 2015 conference.

Despite being in an accident that left Philiz unable to work she has continued to participate on the GTCON executive and has recently returned to school to continue working on her Masters. The Ontario Greater Toronto Chapter (GTCON) is proud to have Philiz Goh as our 2019 Chapter Champion.

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