Robert Meadus Abstract

An Oral History of Men Graduates from Diploma Schools of Nursing in Newfoundland & Labrador

Robert J. Meadus, PhD, RN, CPMHN(C), Associate Professor, Memorial University School of Nursing, St. John’s, NL A1E 4H2

Wanda Emberley-Burke, MEd, NP, RN, Faculty, Centre for Nursing Studies, 100 Forest Road, St. John’s, NL A1E 1E5

Ronald Owens, MN, BN, RN, CPMHN(C), Lecturer, Memorial University School of Nursing &

June Creina Twomy, PhD, RN, Assistant Professor, Memorial University School of Nursing


Registered Nurses (RNs) represent the largest group of health care providers in Canada. However, the profession has not made many strides to accurately reflect the Canadian population as a whole. In 2011, men represent 6.6% of RNs and women represent 93.4% of RNs employed in nursing in Canada (Canadian Nurses Association (CNA), 2013). This distribution of RNs corresponds to the numbers of nurses registered in NL: 5710 women and 340 men (CNA). These facts highlight the gender imbalance that continues to be affiliated with the discipline of nursing. However, despite the fact that nursing traditionally, and even today, is viewed as a predominately female profession, that has not always been the case. Men have had a long and played a significant role, if unacknowledged, association with nursing dating back several centuries in their work with religious, military and lay orders (Mackintosh, 1997). Despite the fact that men have worked as nurses for centuries there has been a lack of attention focused on the contribution of male nurses. This gap in knowledge hinders our understanding of the history of the nursing profession in Canada. Presently, research on men who are graduates of a diploma school of nursing in NL is non-existent. In light of the historical discrimination that has confronted men in nursing this research study will contribute to knowledge development from the perspective of men nurses within the province. The research design for this project is an oral history which is conducted to gather personal narratives of individuals with the purpose of obtaining a record of their lives, or a particular historical event (Boschma, Yonge, & Mychajlunow, 2003). Data collection for participants will be collected through an audio-recorded semi-structured interview. Each interview will start with the question: “Please tell me about your experiences as a male nurse and being a graduate from a diploma nursing program?” An interview guide will be used to facilitate interview discussion and thematic analysis will be used to analyse, describe and report themes from the recorded interviews.


J R Smallwood Foundation

230 Elizabeth Ave, St. John's, NL, CANADA, A1B 3X9

Postal Address: P.O. Box 4200, St. John's, NL, CANADA, A1C 5S7

Tel: (709) 864-8000