Four Carlow University Nurse Practitioner Grads Selected for State’s First and Only Nurse Practitioner Residency

Four Carlow University nurse practitioner graduates are the first NP residents in the state of Pennsylvania, working out of Allegheny Heath Network’s Urgent Care Center in Braddock.

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Drew Wilson, Director, Media Relations July 16, 2020
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Funded by $1.8 Million HRSA grant, partnership with AHN will prepare nurse practitioners to provide care in medically underserved areas, emphasizing mental health and opioid abuse issues

Pittsburgh, Pa. – Four Carlow University family nurse practitioner (NP) graduates have been selected for the first and only nurse practitioner residency program in Pennsylvania, which will be based at the Allegheny Health Network (AHN) Urgent Care Center in Braddock, Pa., and will prepare nurse practitioners to provide care for patients in medically underserved and disadvantaged areas.

The residency program, a partnership between Allegheny Health Network and Carlow University, is a four-year project funded by a $1.8 million grant from the U.S. Health Services and Services Administration.  The residency will begin in July 2020 and last for one year.

“This initiative to create a residency for new family nurse practitioner graduates fits Carlow’s mission so well,” said Deborah Mitchum, DNP, ANP-BC, director of the family nurse practitioner and women’s health nurse practitioner programs at Carlow. “The nurse practitioners will function in a supervised setting, full of practice and continuing education opportunities. They will gain skill and acquire new knowledge as advanced care providers, while managing acute and chronic conditions, promoting good health through education, and providing counseling services to many in the Braddock community.”

The four NP graduates are:

Kourtni Brooke, a Mt. Lebanon resident originally from central Illinois, who graduated from Carlow in 2020.

Mary Elizabeth Grimmett, a Baden resident, who graduated in 2019.  “People benefit from having providers and services in their communities, especially when concerns regarding transportation, finances, or other issues impede a person’s ability to access care,” she said. “Being able to provide access to health care services and patient education to these communities has the potential to not only benefit the individuals and their families, but the entire community. Helping these communities one person and one family at a time is a goal that we should all share.”

Megan Hensler, a North Huntingdon resident, who graduated in 2020.  “Having worked in under-served communities, I know it is important to provide the best care possible,” she said.  “People who need care may not be able to receive it due to lack of insurance coverage or lack of sufficient medical benefits.  I look forward to learning how to properly approach these situations to provide excellent care and education that can help limit unnecessary costs.”

Charlotte Wright, a Hempfield Twp. Resident, who will graduate in 2020.  “I believe that a residency program provides credibility for the primary care provider so that she or he is fully prepared to practice independently,” she said.  “My career – both professionally and my volunteer work locally and in Haiti – has been dedicated to working with the medically underserved, and I plan for that to continue when my residency is completed.”

“Nurse practitioners provide high quality, holistic care from birth to death with a focus on wellness, prevention and management of illness,” said Paula Coe, DNP, MSN, RN, NEA-BC, Vice President,  Nursing Education and Professional Practice, AHN. “We believe a looming shortage of primary care and family physicians will open doors for more nurse practitioners to manage primary care clinics in medically underserved and rural areas. With this residency program, we are committed to providing nurse practitioners with a robust learning experience that will prepare them to work at the highest levels of their profession.”

Residents of Braddock face numerous health challenges including high rates of respiratory disorders, homes that are at risk for lead paint on the walls and lead in the drinking water, and high rates of disability in people under age 65. An estimated 32 percent of borough residents live in poverty, and about 13 percent have no health insurance, both well above state and local averages.

AHN opened an urgent care center in Braddock in 2015, offering children and adults quick, convenient and expert care for minor ailments and injuries, as well as diagnostic capabilities such as X-ray imaging and blood work, and telehealth capabilities for more specialized needs.

For more information about, the nurse practitioner programs at Carlow, please visit

### About Carlow University

Carlow is a private, co-educational, Catholic university located in the heart of Pittsburgh’s “Eds, Meds, and Tech” district. Founded by the Sisters of Mercy in 1929, Carlow’s curricula and partnerships reflect its strong commitment to social justice; ethical, forward-thinking and responsible leadership; and service to the community that has a meaningful impact.  Undergraduate and graduate degrees are offered in two colleges:  the College of Health and Wellness and the College of Arts and Sciences.  The College of Health and Wellness includes the departments of Nursing, Respiratory Care, Healthcare Data Analytics, Health Management, and graduate degrees in Speech-Language Pathology and the Physician Assistant programs.  Graduate programs in Occupational Therapy and Physical Therapy will soon be added.

Carlow University also believes in the education and growth of students both inside and outside the classroom, where they can join student government, clubs, and academic honorary societies where they can develop skills in judgment, leadership, analysis, decision-making, and communication.  For student-athletes, Carlow’s 14 athletic teams are known as the Celtics, a reflection of the university’s Irish heritage and roots.

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