Faculty Spotlight: Dr. Diane Kunyk

Get to know Dr. Diane Kunyk, Vice Dean

10 January 2020

Dr. Kunyk is a long-serving member of our community with expertise in population health and research, policy development and implementation, and community health nursing. She is interested in the applied and theoretical aspects of ethics—specifically relational and organization ethics.

 She has served as the Foundation Coordinator for one year and spent two years as the Associate Dean of Graduate Studies—and is the recipient of numerous awards, such as the University of Alberta President’s Doctoral Award of Distinction and the CIHR Strategic Training in Health Research Fellowship.

 Dr. Kunyk has experiential and teaching experiences in population health and research, policy development and implementation, and community health nursing. Her goal in teaching is to create a comfortable, safe environment for exploring and learning with one another. 

Why did you pursue a career in nursing?

When in high school, I wanted to find a career that would be meaningful, fascinating and challenging. One of our family friends, a public health nurse, promised me that nursing would do this—and she was so right. 

What is it you love most about the profession? 

There are many components but perhaps it is the relational practice that stands out for me. We have the privilege of providing care to individuals, families and communities during some of the most intimate, challenging and rewarding moments of their lives.

What inspired you to pursue an academic position? 

My nursing practise has raised so many questions, particularly those related to ethical nursing practice. Academia provides me with the opportunity to perform research in this area, teach and supervise talented students, and to constantly engage in learning. 

U of A’s nursing faculty consistently ranks among the top programs in the world. Why do you think that is? 

To a large extent, it is our people -- our students, faculty and staff, and alumni. We have an impressive history, talented and exceptional faculty, and outstanding students. 

What do you enjoy most about teaching nursing students?

I am constantly amazed by their enthusiasm, questions, and insights. Being a partner to their growth as emerging nurses and scholars is inspiring. Students truly are the reason the Faculty of Nursing exists. 

What advice do you have for nursing students who are close to becoming RN’s?

Remember that they are emerging nurse leaders and change agents. When the time comes for them to take a graduate degree, we look forward to sharing the next stage of their academic journey.