Don Tyson

Don Tyson

Office Phone: (540) 432-4194


Main Campus, Harrisonburg

Office Location: CC 334

Office Hours: 8:30am to 4:30 pm, Monday through Friday,


MS in Nursing


Nursing Dept

“I will walk alongside students, colleagues, and others as they become serving leaders.”

Don Tyson has been teaching in the Nursing Department at the undergraduate and graduate levels at EMU since August 1999. In addition to teaching, he serves as the Director of the MSN program. During the summer, as well as on weekends throughout the school year, he works at Sentara – Rockingham Memorial Healthcare in the Post-Anesthesia Care Unit on a prn basis. He has previous experience in a variety of clinical and administrative nursing roles related to critical care, post-anesthesia care, and quality improvement. He graduated from Goshen College in 1979 and from the University of Virginia in 1986. In April of 2012 he received his PhD in Nursing from George Mason University based on his qualitative research examining the critical thinking characteristics of African students enrolled in nursing programs in the United States. While a student at George Mason, his research focused on issues related to the uninsured and undocumented immigrants as well as critical thinking, learning style, and other issues experienced by international nursing students. He enjoys singing in the local Shenandoah Valley Choral Society, baseball, gardening, biking, and camping.


*PhD in Nursing, George Mason University, May 2012

*M.S.N. University of Virginia, 1985

*B.S., Goshen College, 1979

Scholarly Presentations and Abstracts

The Impact of the Values Based Leadership Project on MHS-affiliated Executive’s Leadership Styles and Organizational Success Qualitative research study in process examining leadership styles and life experiences of VBLP participants. Funded by Mennonite Health Services.

The Experience of African Students Studying Nursing in the United States in Relation to Their Use of Critical Thinking Report of PhD dissertation research at Pi Mu STTI Scholarship Conference, Harrisonburg, VA (April 2013) and to Epsilon Zeta STTI chapter in Fairfax, VA (April 2014).

Ethical Issues for Nurse Managers March 1, 2012. Presented at Mennonite Health Assembly, Louisville, KY. As part of Nurse Manager track at conference.

Webquests as a Means for Developing Health
Care Policy Decisions
June 1, 2009. Presented at the 17th annual Washington Health Policy Institute, sponsored by George Mason University.

Ethical Perspectives Related to Providing Healthcare to Undocumented Immigrants March 2009. Presented at Mennonite Health Assembly, Cleveland, OH.

Investigating Perceptions of Needs and Assets Relative to Healthcare Access in Prince William County. February 2008 to Northern Virginia Healthcare Safety Net, Fairfax VA & April 2008 to Pi Mu Scholarship Conference, Harrisonburg, VA

Cultural ways of knowing influencing research and health care in the African Experience April 2006. Presentation at Pi MU, Sigma Theta Tau scholarship conference. Harrisonburg, VA

Church, Community and Professional Service

Staff Nurse Serves as prn staff nurse in the Post Anesthesia Care Unit at Sentara Rockingham Memorial Hospital, Harrisonburg, VA. Summer 2000 to present.

Member, Mennonite Health Services Board of Director Fall 2015 to present.

Induction Counselor For Pi Mu honor society, representing EMU. Fall 2013 to present.

Member, Mennonite Health Assembly Planning Committee March 2008 to 2014. Served as Moderator to the MHA conference in March 2010 in Norfolk, VA.

Chairperson, Strategic Planning Committee, Lindale Mennonite Church. Led the development of new vision statements and strategic plan as well as annual evaluation 2004 to present.

Contact person for Augusta Advocacy Chapter of Virginia Nurses Association Sept 2010 to present.

Honors, Awards and Grants

Quality Service Award Eastern Mennonite University. 4th quarter 2015. For practicing servant leadership in the Nursing Department and throughout the University.

Research Grant from Pi Mu chapter of Sigma Theta Tau International April 2014. To help fund the MHS sponsored research study entitled The Impact of the Values Based Leadership Project on MHS-affiliated Executive’s Leadership Styles and Organizational Success.

Research Grant from Epsilon Zeta chapter of Sigma Theta Tau International May 2011. To research the experience of African students using critical thinking while studying nursing in the U.S.

Founders Award for Scholarship in Evidence-Based Practice. April 2008. Awarded by Pi Mu Chapter of Sigma Theta Tau, Harrisonburg, VA for research related to the uninsured in Prince William County VA.

Epsilon Zeta Chapter Inducted into the George Mason University chapter of Sigma Theta Tau International nursing honor society.

VA Doctoral Loan Repayment Program. May 2007. Received $25,000 loan/scholarship for funding PhD course work through State Council for Higher Education in Virginia for use during academic year 2007-2008 at George Mason University.

Certifications and Licenses

*Licensed as an RN in the state of Virginia

*Advanced Cardiac Life Support through the American Heart Association. January 2016

Professional Memberships

American Nurses Association

Virginia Nurses Association Contact person for Augusta Advocacy Chapter of VNA

Mennonite Healthcare Fellowship

Sigma Theta Tau International Inducted April 2008

New Courses Taught

NURS 620 – Quality, Risk and Safety In the MSN program. Spring 2014

EMU Service

Team Leader for MSN CCNE Accreditation Visit – 2016-2017

Faculty Status Committee – Member Fall 2016 to present.

DNP Design & Implementation Team – Member. April 2015 to present.

Nursing Structure Task Force – Served as leader in academic year 2015-2016.

Faculty Sustainability Task Force Member academic year 2014-2015.

Graduate Leadership Task Force Member Fall 2012 to June 2014.

Cross Cultural Committee Member Fall 2012 to 2015.

Tuesday Luncheon March 2013 The Experience of African Students Studying Nursing in the United States in Relation to Their Use of Critical Thinking Report of PhD dissertation research.

Cross Cultural to Zambia May 2012. Co-led with Dr. Wanda Thuma McDermond from Messiah College in Pennsylvania. Cross-cultural was a joint effort between EMU and Messiah.

Writing Committee Member of EMU committee. Fall 2011 to present.

Hurricane Katrina relief. Led group of Nursing students to Mississippi, September 2005, for 2 weeks to work with the American Red Cross in relief efforts after Hurricane Katrina.

Crosscultural.Co-led cross cultural group to Kenya and Zimbabwe, Summer 2003 with Krista Martin.