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Monday, April 14, 2014 - School of Nursing awarded nearly $73,000 for Arab American health project

Suha Kridli, Ph.D.
Oakland University’s School of Nursing has been awarded $72,921 from the Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan Foundation in support of its Improving Health Behaviors in Arab American Youth project. The initiative launches this month in Dearborn, the city with the highest urban concentration of Arab Americans in the United States.

“This project has a special emphasis on obesity prevention and is targeted at reducing the number of chronic illnesses for young Arab Americans,” said Suha Kridli, Ph.D., the grant’s principal investigator. “We are going to offer specific guidance and provide practical tools that can improve students overall health while lowering health care costs."

Dr. Kridli added, “Prior research has shown the growing prevalence of type 2 diabetes and obesity in the Arab American community, yet there have been few, if any, youth-focused programs that specifically address these issues.”

Using cost-effective, community based approaches, Kridli and her team will measure the effectiveness of a translated and culturally adapted health education curriculum delivered by trained high-school aged mentors.

That high-school mentor program’s success will be compared to the same content  delivered by an adult group leader in a classroom setting.

And, the effect of parental engagement on each method will be measured.

"Our School of Nursing, inline with our University, believes in community engagement and therefore our faculty research and programs often have a community focus,” said Dean Kerri Schuiling. "We have an emphasis on keeping our communities healthy and doing what we can to improve the health of our communities.”

The project will utilize unique resources and partnerships among Oakland University, Wayne State University, the Dearborn Board of Education and Dearborn school system.

About BCBSM Foundation:

The The BCBSM Foundation is the philanthropic affiliate of Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan — and is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit, incorporated separately from BCBSM. The  BCBSM Foundation is an independent licensee of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association. BCBSM Foundation grant programs are conducted in Michigan, by Michigan based researchers and non-profit organizations to address issues of: quality and costs of care, access to care and community health.

About the Oakland University School of Nursing:

The Oakland University Board of Trustees established the School of Nursing (SON) in 1974, and the first students were admitted in the fall of 1975. Graduate nursing programs began in 1984 leading to the Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) degree. The state’s first Doctorate of Nursing Practice (DNP) program was established in 2006. All of the Oakland University School of Nursing academic programs are fully accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE).