“Who has been here that looks like me?”: A narrative inquiry into Black, Indigenous, and People of Color graduate nursing students' experiences of white academic spaces

Nursing Inquiry 30 (4):e12568 (2023)
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Abstract

Canadian Schools of Nursing rest upon white, colonial legacies that have shaped and defined what is valued as nursing knowledge and pedagogy. The diversity that exists in clinical nursing and is emerging within the graduate student population is not currently reflected within nursing faculty and academic leadership. Black, Indigenous, and People of Color (BIPOC) nurse leaders, historically and presently, are repeatedly left unacknowledged as knowers and keepers of nursing knowledge. This lack of diversity persists across nursing knowledge generation, research, and healthcare practices that ultimately aim to serve the increasingly diverse Canadian population. This narrative inquiry study examined the experiences of eight BIPOC graduate nursing students as they navigated white academic nursing spaces. The findings are presented to reflect their experiences of entrenched in whiteness, erasure of identity, and navigating belonging. These study findings highlight the importance of surfacing academic nursing history shaped by colonialism and racism, the need to diversify nursing faculty and the graduate nursing student population, and implementing nursing curricular and syllabi audits to ensure that they reflect the multitude of ways of knowing to expand dominant Eurocentric and Western knowledge in nursing education.

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