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Sullivan, Katherine

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The purpose of this research study was to explore the long-term impact of international service-learning (ISL) experiences taken by nursing students in Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) programs and how their current nursing practice might be affected by these experiences. A sequential explanatory mixed methods case study design was used to survey and interview BSN alumni about their cross-cultural experiences. The quantitative survey data used the Cultural Capacity Scale (Perng & Watson, 2012) to compare scores of 93 BSN alumni who did and did not have an ISL experience during nursing school. Then the qualitative portion utilized semi-structured interviews with alumni who had taken ISL trips during nursing school. Nurses who went on an ISL trip in school had higher total Cultural Capacity Scale scores than nursing alumni who did not have those experiences. Themes in the interview narratives included remembering personal benefits from their experiences, developing a broader worldview, experiencing profound gratitude, and feeling overwhelmed by needs. These findings were integrated to describe the long-term impacts of ISL experiences both personally and professionally in current nursing practice.


183 pages

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