Nursing Story Slam

Nursing Story Slam Header

All stories matter. We want to hear yours.

Nurses have stories. Stories about people, love, pain, suffering, grief, relief, depression, appreciation, regret, health, illness, death, research that changes practice, teaching that changes practice, practice that changes practice, teaching, and research. All of these stories matter but often go untold.

UCalgary Nursing is hosting its second annual Nursing Story Slam on May 9, 2024 (during National Nursing Week) to share these stories. Nurses are invited to submit a summary or description of a 5-minute story. Ten stories will be selected for the live presentation.

Participants will be offered a workshop to shape and rehearse their story and craft it into a quality performance for an audience. At the main event, each presenter will be given 5 minutes to share their powerful short memory, reflection, or experience in front of a live audience. Of all stories presented at the “Slam,” three will be selected for first, second, and third prizes.

2024 UCalgary Nursing Story Slam

Open to the public, free admission 

Thursday, May 9, 2024

Please register by April 29, 2024

6-9 p.m.

Doors open at 6 p.m., Presentation begins at 7 p.m.

A cash bar reception is available prior to the performances in the hotel lobby

Aloft Calgary University Hotel

2359 Banff Trail NW 

Google Maps link

Red theatre chair

Register Now!

Thank you for your submission.

Meet the 2024 Nursing Story Slam Presenters

Dr. Merilee Brockway

Dr. Merilee (Meredith) Brockway​ is a registered nurse, a lactation consultant and an assistant professor with expertise in human milk composition, infant feeding, and maternal-child health outcomes. She completed her PhD in nursing at the University of Calgary, examining maternal breastfeeding self-efficacy and infant feeding outcomes in moderate and late preterm infants. Merilee’s program of research examines donor human milk as a clinical intervention to mitigate early life perturbations to the infant microbiome and how these relate to child health outcomes. When Merilee is not researching breastfeeding and human milk, she enjoys skiing, biking and hiking with her family.

Nicole Chen, woman with black cardigan standing in hallway

Nicole is a public health RN who enjoys direct client and community nursing care. Her various community health roles have included working as an Assistant Head Nurse (AHN) with the Alberta provincial Communicable Disease Control team and at a COVID immunization clinic. She has also worked as a staff public health RN with Alberta’s school health nursing programs, well child health clinics, refugee health services, and notifiable disease and outbreak control. Her love of public health developed out of an interest in immunizations and the prevention of vaccine preventable disease.

Tracey Clancy

Dr. Tracey Clancy is a tenured, associate professor teaching within the Faculty of Nursing, University of Calgary. She has been a nurse for 36 years and practiced in oncology, hematology, bone marrow and stem cell transplant, in addition to an advanced nursing practice role within the Advanced Vascular Access Service at the Foothills Medical Center. Tracey has been teaching students for 28 years and joined the faculty as a full-time instructor in 2008. Her scholarly interests include exploring the philosophical underpinnings of nursing, meaningfulness, teaching presence, authentic learning and self-authorship. Tracey is curious and appreciates life’s beautiful questions.   

Jennifer Dorman

Jennifer Dorman is a PhD graduand and current sessional instructor with the Faculty of Nursing at the University of Calgary. She has been a hospice palliative care nurse for more than 15 years, working with both adult and paediatric populations. Had she not gone into nursing, Jennifer could see herself as either a thanatologist (someone who studies death and dying) or a storm chaser. Outside of nursing, Jennifer is an ardent Calgary Flames and Calgary Stampeders fan, enjoys getting out in nature, and dreams of publishing a fiction novel and/or winning the lottery.

Jennifer Eyford

As the Director of Mental Health, Addictions, and Outreach at The Alex, Jennifer brings more than 20 years of leadership, mental health, and addiction experience. Jennifer remains dedicated to frontline work, supporting AHS addiction and mental health programs on weekends. Sharing insights at conferences, she presents on topics such as addiction medicine, peer support, and health equity. Pursuing her Doctor of Nursing degree, Jennifer seeks to deepen her understanding and impact in the field. Her education includes studies at the Illinois Institute of Technology, Mount Royal University, and the University of Calgary. Jennifer enjoys ultra-marathon running and is a voracious reader. 

Dave Patterson

Dave Patterson is a Registered Nurse with experience throughout the lifespan. Entering the nursing profession as a student in his late 30s, to bedside care in the NICU during his 40s, and nurse educator in his 50s, Dave has provided care throughout the lifespan. 

Dave is currently an Assistant Professor (Teaching) at UCalgary in the Faculty of Nursing. A father of three, and a quasi-dad to hundreds of students over the past 12 years, Dave has the soft tissues in his office to help catch the awesomeness (tears) that leaks from the corner of your eyes; everyone needs to share that awesomeness occasionally. Dave firmly believes that “it will be okay” and as we open ourselves to the possibilities around us, everyone can come out ahead. 

Juliana Rempel

Juliana is a passionate student with the goal of community nursing when she graduates. She loves to get involved in her community and make friends wherever there’s an opportunity. Juliana is crafty and artistic and spends her free time dreaming up her next big project. Although dealing with chronic illness, Juliana does not let this stop her from achieving her dreams and is passionate about sharing her story advocating for others going through similar illnesses. 

Logan Rutter

Logan's career ADD has seen him work as a special needs teacher, an immigration officer, ski patroller, and since graduating from the UofC, an RN in the CVICU, main Foothills ICU, as a quarantine officer for PHAC, and currently as a critical care flight nurse in the Canadian Arctic. 

Katherine Stelfox

Katherine Stelfox is a doctoral candidate in the Faculty of Nursing, University of Calgary. Her research centres around older adults and long-term care. Katherine is an instructor for Nunavut Arctic College, where she teaches nursing research and gerontological nursing. Katherine has a diverse nursing background, having worked as a registered nurse in Nunavut and the Yukon, as well intensive care in Edmonton and long-term care in Calgary. Having done her master’s degree in global health with a focus on healthcare policy and economics, Katherine feels passionately about the intersectionality of policy, economics, and quality of care in long-term care facilities. 

Lorraine Venturato

Dr. Lorraine Venturato is an associate professor in the Faculty of Nursing and the former Faculty of Nursing Chair in Gerontology. She has worked as a clinician, educator and researcher and her work is focused on enhancing quality of life and quality of care for older adults. She enjoys sleeping, taking photos of everyone until they tell her to stop, and writing poetry that no-one ever reads. 

Important Dates

Feb. 28, 2024

Story Submission Deadline extended

March 4, 2024

10 participants will be selected and notified this week

Saturday, April 13, 2024

Performance and coaching workshop

Performance and Coaching Workshop April 13, 2024

For the 10 selected presenters, we're offering a performance and coaching workshop Saturday, April 13, 2024 in the Professional Faculties Building on main campus.

Last year’s workshop for our inaugural event was such a success that the presenters agreed it was a key activity to be a part of.

Pictured: Our 2023 presenters for Nursing Story Slam with co-lead Dr. Nancy Moules and coaches Dr. Mike Lang and Dr. John Williamson.

Nursing Story Slam Workshop

Dr. Mike Lang on how to craft your story

If you are unsure about having a story to share, please watch this short video from filmmaker and UCalgary Nursing alumni, Dr. Mike Lang MSc'15, PhD'22. In it, he provides ideas of how to pull moments from routine clinical practice, research, and/or personal experience, and craft them into stories that deepen our understanding of the human health experience.

Meet the Judges

Karen Cook

Karen Cook

Director, Communications, UCalgary Nursing

Karen Cook has been telling stories for over 40 years as a communications practitioner. Her experience includes roles with the University of Manitoba, the Canadian Red Cross, Western Canada Lottery Corporation and Calgary Public Library. But her passion is post secondary education and the stories of all the students she has met along the way. Working in UCalgary's Faculty of Nursing for 20+ years, she calls herself a nurse through osmosis and, as a Story Slam judge, she will be paying close attention to recollections that make her laugh or cry since she enjoys doing both. 

Dr. Lorelli Nowell

Dr. Lorelli Nowell

Associate Professor and Assistant Dean Graduate Programs, UCalgary Nursing 

Dr. Lorelli Nowell is a proud UCalgary alum, obtaining both her MN (2013) and PhD (2017) in the Faculty of Nursing. She  has a particular interest in mentorship and innovations in teaching and learning where she shares and listens to stories that help captivate, inspire, convey complex concepts, and foster a deeper emotional and intellectual understanding of diverse experiences. 

Dr. Aoife Mac Namara, Dean and Professor, Faculty of Arts

Dr. Aoife Mac Namara

Dean and Professor, Faculty of Arts

Dr. Mac Namara is a Professor and Dean of the Faculty of Arts, UCalgary. Originally trained as an artist herself, she holds a doctorate in art, design, and the built environment from the University of Ulster in Belfast. She pursued a doctorate in art education at Concordia University, holds a master’s degree in the social history of art from the University of Leeds, and a master’s in fine art from the Birmingham Institute of Art and Design. There is an art in the performance of good stories and Dr. Mac Namara offers her discerning artist eye to our Nursing Story Slam.

Dr. Derritt Mason

Dr. Derritt Mason

Associate Professor, English, UCalgary Arts
Educational Leader in Residence, Taylor Institute for Teaching and Learning

Derritt Mason is the author of Queer Anxieties of Young Adult Literature and Culture (2021) and the co-editor, with Kenneth B. Kidd, of two essay collections: Alt Kid Lit: What Children’s Literature Might Be (2024) and Queer as Camp: Essays on Summer, Style, and Sexuality (2019).

Derritt also produces and hosts a podcast called 3QTL: Three Questions About Teaching and Learning. As a scholar of literature, Derritt is interested in how stories shape the world around us—and how culture and convention shape the stories we choose to tell. 

See videos from the 2023 participants Read UToday article

Kate Wong

Graduate student, UCalgary Nursing

Sara Dolan

Graduate Student, UCalgary Nursing

Emily Hilton

Graduate Student

Eric Lavoie

Adjunct Clinical Professor

Katie Webber

Graduate student, UCalgary Nursing

Jennifer Chung

Graduate Student, UCalgary Nursing

Carina Zhu

Graduate student, UCalgary Nursing

Tracie Risling

Associate professor, UCalgary Nursing

Tiffany Brew

Graduate Student, UCalgary Nursing

Lorraine Venturato

Associate Professor, UCalgary Nursing

Meet your Nursing Story Slam co-leads and coaches

Marc Hall

Marc Hall

Co-lead and organizer, Nursing Story Slam

Research Specialist, Nursing Research Office

Marc Hall is one of our co-leads organizing this Nursing Story Slam event. He is a Research Specialist in the Nursing Research Office and has been with the Faculty of Nursing for 10 years. Although he has never been a practicing nurse, he has experience in telling stories from his involvement in the creation of a documentary, made-for-tv-movie, and musical about events from his high-school years. Since he has worked closely with nurses while being in the faculty, he has gained a deep appreciation for what they do and is really excited to be involved in this event to showcase their stories.

Nancy Moules

Dr. Nancy Moules (PhD)

Co-lead, organizer and coach, Nursing Story Slam

Associate Dean, Research and Professor, UCalgary Nursing

Dr. Nancy Moules, RN, PhD is a Professor in the Faculty of Nursing and Associate Dean, Research. She is Editor of the Journal of Applied Hermeneutics and the co-founder and Chair of the Canadian Hermeneutic Institute. Her clinical background in family and individual therapy and her research using hermeneutics has always had a focus on people’s stories. “Remember this one thing, said Badger. The stories people tell have a way of taking care of them. If stories come to you, care for them. And learn to give them away where they are needed. Sometimes a person needs a story more than food to stay alive.” – Barry Lopez, Crow and Weasel.

Mike Lang

Dr. Mike Lang (PhD)

Coach, Nursing Story Slam

Digital Storytelling Facilitator, Filmmaker/Producer, Mike Lang Stories

Dr. Mike Lang is a health researcher, filmmaker, and Level 3 Common Language Digital Storytelling facilitator. He has directed and produced five feature-length documentaries and three web series about the human health experience in addition to publishing academic research articles and facilitating the creation of over 850 short films with patients, family caregivers, and healthcare professionals. Connect with him on all socials @mikelangstories or @commonlanguagedst.

"Each of us is an artist of our days; the greater our integrity and awareness, the more original and creative our time will become." - John O’Donahue, To Bless the Space Between Us

Dr. John Williamson

Dr. John Williamson (PhD)

Coach, Nursing Story Slam

Adjunct Assistant Professor, Werklund School of Education

Dr. John Williamson, PhD, is a K – 12 Coordinating Teacher of Diverse Learning Services, adjunct assistant professor in the Werklund School of Education, and spoken word and “page” poet. His award-winning PhD Dissertation, The Case of the Appearing / Disappearing Slow Learner was republished in the Journal of Applied Hermeneutics, and, in 2019, he published his first chap book of poetry, Broken and Strong: Family Fragments through Calgary’s Loft 112. He continues to publish academically and creatively. John is a three-time winner of Calgary’s individual monthly poetry slam and a member of the Calgary 2018 poetry slam team that competed for the national title. He is also an executive member of Can You Hear Me Now? Provincial youth slam. Known for using humor and pathos to make the usual unusual and vice versa, John tries to live creatively by Emily Dickinson’s advice to “tell the truth but tell it slant.”