COUPN Awards

Some of Ontario’s most accomplished and innovative nursing educators and students are being honoured today for their contributions to quality health care in the province.

Researchers, students, faculty and agency leaders are among the 12 recipients of  the 2018 Council of Ontario University Programs in Nursing (COUPN) Awards for excellence in nursing education and scholarship.

This year’s awards, the 11th annual, recognize research into perinatal mental health and postpartum depression, the use of video gaming simulation in nursing education, and the sexuality of people with intellectual disabilities; initiatives such as nursing outreach to Aboriginal communities and the study of best practices in compassionate care; and teachers who are making a difference in the field of nursing education.

“These awards demonstrate the role of Ontario’s universities as partners in a better future, through the delivery of high-quality nursing education that contributes to the health care system, helping Ontarians lead healthier and longer lives,” said Dr. Jennifer Medves, COUPN Chair.

David Lindsay, President and CEO of the Council of Ontario Universities, said: “Nursing is a vitally important pillar of Ontario’s health-care system, and these awards show the equally important role nursing education plays in building and nurturing a profession that displays the highest standards of expertise and care.”

More than 10,000 students graduate from health programs at Ontario universities each year, including nearly 4,500 nurses.

See below for a list of this year’s winners.

Looking for more information about the annual Council of Ontario University Programs in Nursing (COUPN) awards?

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Read the 2018 COUPN Award’s Event Brochure.



Award for Strategic Contribution to Nursing Education
  • Dr. Bernice Downey, McMaster University
Agency Recognition Award
  • Sunnybrook, Health Sciences Centre
Award for Excellence in Collaborative Education
  • Margaret Verkuyl, Ryerson University
Doctoral Dissertation Award
  • Dr. Pierre Pariseau-Legault, University of Ottawa
Excellence in Professional Nursing Practice at the Undergraduate Student Level Award
  • Brianna Decontie, Lakehead University
Excellence in Teaching Award
  • Dr. Shelley Walkerley, York University
Master’s Student Award of Excellence
  • Mary Coughlin, Queen's University
Clinical Instructor Award
  • Gemma Percival, York University
Preceptor Recognition Award
  • Jamin Osachuk, Western University
Scholarship into Practice Award
  • Dr. Cindy-Lee Dennis, University of Toronto
COUPN-AMS Quality Compassionate Caring Award
  • Dr. Claire Mallette, York University
  • Dr. Don Rose, Ryerson University