Christine E. Lynn College of Nursing
We are dedicated to providing you with the best possible customer experience, so please share your honest feedback.
Mary Ann Leavitt
Mary Ann Leavitt, PhD, RN, CCRN-K, CHFN-K, Assistant Professor Dr. Mary Ann Leavitt is board certified in critical care nursing and heart failure nursing. She was led to nursing while studying biology at Florida State University. Nursing seemed a natural fit for her as it included both biology, and interacting and connecting with people, often at the times they need it most. Dr. Leavitt enjoys helping students understand difficult concepts and how varying disciplines come together to solve real-world problems. She says, "In nursing situations, there is a relationship between the nurse and the one being nursed. Along with knowing the science, you need to know how to connect with patients. I like to have students practice this - nursing through caring." She says she enjoys helping students learn to relate to patients by developing their skills in critical thinking, judgment, and pattern recognition.
Dr. Leavitt's teaching thrived through the pandemic. Nursing education is highly hands-on, but she and her students overcame the challenges of not being able to meet in-person and quickly adapted to a fully remote environment. She pre-recorded lectures with narrated presentations she asked students to watch before class. Then, during class, Dr. Leavitt facilitated interactive activities and used videos to demonstrate caring for patients with medical-surgical conditions. Dr. Leavitt's current research is in collaboration with faculty in FAU's College of Engineering and Computer Science and builds on her previous heart failure research. She found that patients with heart failure do not always recognize when their symptoms are getting worse, and by the time they do, it becomes an emergency hospital visit or more. "Our goal is to provide a non-invasive, skin-based, wearable sensor that could warn providers their patients may be having worsening symptoms of heart failure." The team will soon be testing a prototype device on a small sample of patients.
Dr. Leavitt brings a great deal of real-world experience to her teaching, including working in critical care, surgical units, cardiac ICUs, cardiac catheterization labs, and cardiac electrophysiology labs. She was honored with the 2021 FAU Excellence and Innovation in Undergraduate Teaching Award and the 2021 Daisy Award for Extraordinary Nursing Faculty.