Ann Marie Peck, WC '97, BU '01, of Gainesville, Georgia,

Ann Marie Peck: Educational Intervention

Ann Marie Peck, WC '97, BU '01, of Gainesville, Georgia,
Ann Marie Peck, WC ’97, BU ’01, of Gainesville, Georgia,

After Ann Marie Peck, WC ’97, BU ’01, lost her mother and her grandmother to heart disease, helping others fight the disease became a special mission for her. The mission became even more important when she realized how many of the women she treated as a nurse were in the dark about heart disease.

“I was seeing these women who had high cholesterol, hypertension, diabetes or all of them, what we call metabolic syndrome. And I realized no one is educating these ladies,” she said.

Peck used her capstone project for the DNP program to spread the word about the conditions and how to prevent them. She created an educational intervention for four different groups of women, including those at three local churches, focusing on metabolic syndrome, a group of risk factors that combine to increase a person’s risk for coronary artery disease, Type 2 diabetes and stroke. Most of the women lacked knowledge about heart disease and diabetes, and had no idea of the connection between metabolic syndrome and other conditions, such as obesity, high blood pressure and high cholesterol.

“What I wanted to show was that when we do educate, it increases health understanding and knowledge, and I did show that,” Peck said.

Peck is still dedicated to education. Now that she has her DNP degree, she plans to begin a new phase of her career by teaching other nurses. She has a lot of experience to impart. Earning both Bachelor of Science in Nursing and a Master of Science in Nursing degrees from Brenau, Peck has served as a nurse in hospitals, end-of-life care facilities and a primary care clinic. Currently, she treats female inmates at one of Georgia’s maximum-security state prisons.

Brenau’s DNP program was hard work, but Peck said she was gratified to see how what she accomplished in the DNP program improved her approach to nursing.

“I think what I realized more than anything was how much I had to offer,” she said. “And of course, I’ve made some friends for life.”

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