Doctoral graduate credits School of Nursing with current knowledge and future outcomes

Bola Olarewaju, a 2020 graduate of the Doctor of Philosophy Degree Program at the School of Nursing, applies her research skills to make a difference on a global scale.Bola Olarewaju, a 2020 graduate of the Doctor of Philosophy Degree Program at the School of Nursing, applies her research skills to make a difference on a global scale.

This fall, Bola Olarewaju takes her knowledge across the globe. She connects with health care specialists in Cambodia with a shared goal to improve outcomes for infants in the neonatal intensive care unit (NICU).

It’s the beginning of the global impact she always hoped she have and the reason she sought a Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) degree at the Betty Irene Moore School of Nursing at UC Davis.

After four years in practice as a pediatric nurse practitioner, Olarewaju recognized that while her clinical skills were advanced, her research abilities needed a boost.

“I knew I wanted to work with population health. I have a passion for women and children. I wanted to do something that would affect them not only locally but also on a global scale,” said Olarewaju, a graduate of the Class of 2020 doctoral program. “Sometimes it's about discovering something new, but other times it's about discovering what doesn't work, which is just as important for research.”

Olarewaju works with families whose children have cleft and craniofacial anomalies, as well as those who have airway anatomy (e.g., a tracheotomy) that needs surgical intervention or medical management. A member of the UC Davis Health Department of Otolaryngology
Head and Neck Surgery team, she says her doctoral study improves how she clinically cares for her patients.

“In the day and age of patients doing research on their own, you need to be up to date on what is current, what actually makes sense for this patient and for this family,” Olarewaju explained. “Improving the quality of our outcomes is so important and definitely has a research component because we have to be able to track these patients throughout their childhood.”
Olarewaju chose the Betty Irene Moore School of Nursing because it was part of UC Davis Health and to benefit from the one-on-one mentoring from faculty.

“Even in the beginning stages when I was contemplating my research question, my advisor was such a connector,” she said. “If I hadn't met with different faculty, I probably would have had a much tougher time figuring out my topic and how to approach the research question.”

Graduates of the School of Nursing exercise leadership through scientific approaches, vision, initiative, cultural inclusiveness, teamwork, and a commitment to assuring health care is highly effective, compassionate and accessible. Olarewaju considers the four-year experience only the beginning of her impact on children and families here at home and abroad.

“I'm so grateful for the four years that I had at the Betty Irene Moore School of Nursing. The classes really helped me with not only quantitative research but also qualitative research. It gave me such a great breadth of knowledge in research design and scope, how to improve my writing skills and how to communicate my research to an audience,” Olarewaju explained. “This degree is your jumping off point. This doesn't have to be the end of the line.”

Are you interested in applying to the Doctor of Philosophy Degree Program? If so, you can learn more on the program web pages. Prospective students may also sign up for the school’s email group to receive regular updates about the school’s graduate degree programs.