Elizabeth Koldoff, PhD student, was the recipient of a $100,000 predoctoral scholarship from the University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center Fran and Earl Ziegler College of Nursing’s Women and Child Health Initiative in 2014. Early on Koldoff identified a family-focused area of strong need as her program of research. She is interested in family-oriented factors that influence the adolescent child with cerebral palsy's engagement in physical activity. She has and wants to work with families and study strategies to keep them physically active to improve their general health.
A paper from her PhD course Roles and Responsibilities of the Nurse Scientist course was a literature review, and from that she prepared and submitted a manuscript to the Journal of Pediatric Nursing resulting in the article Physical Activity Among Adolescents with Cerebral Palsy: An Integrative Review. Elizabeth's experience with the Oklahoma Interdisciplinary Leadership Education in Neurodevelopment Disabilities (LEND) has helped her to focus on the needs of this population and the importance of including multiple disciplines, including the family, in her research.
Elizabeth has made important interdisciplinary contacts here on the OUHSC campus and is working with grant funded Rehabilitation Scientist, Dr. Thubi Kolobe, who has expertise in studies with children with cerebral palsy. In addition, Elizabeth received one of the Graduate College Awards for Scientific Achievement at the Graduate Research Education and Technology Symposium on the HSC campus. Elizabeth's long term career goals include to continue teaching at the University level, to build a program of community action research with adolescents who have cerebral palsy and their families, and to someday work in administration. Her advice to future nursing students is the see the person you are caring for. “Our patients are more than just a diagnosis or an impairment,” stated Koldoff. “In the course of those few minutes you have with each person throughout your busy day, you can make a difference in the healing process, those minutes matter.” “Your patients and their families are counting on you.”