Saint Louis University’s Alumni Merit Awards recognize outstanding alumni and their achievements. Heitman will receive the award Thursday, Sept. 21 at SLU’s Alumni Merit Recognition Ceremony to be held at Busch Center in St. Louis.
“I am grateful for the opportunity I had to attend Saint Louis University and for the privilege of being taught by a remarkable nursing faculty,” Heitman said.
Heitman graduated from Barnes Hospital School of Nursing in 1972. She graduated from Southeast in 1984 with a Bachelor of Science in Nursing. She earned a Master of Science in Nursing (Research) in 1987 and a Doctor of Philosophy in Nursing in 2001, both from Saint Louis University. She is certified in Advanced Practice Nursing as an Adult Health Clinical Nurse Specialist.
She began her professional nursing career as a staff nurse in the critical care units at Southeast Hospital, the forerunner to SoutheastHEALTH, in Cape Girardeau, and upon completion of her master’s degree she served as a clinical nurse specialist/case manager and coordinator for its Regional Heart Center.
Heitman has served at Southeast since 1988 where she teaches critical care and nursing research courses in the University’s Department of Nursing. Her research specializes in cardiovascular nursing and organ transplantation.
She has been a valuable asset in the development of the Adult Health II undergraduate course and the clinical nurse specialist graduate program. She also has served on the Faculty Senate and Benefits Committee, and as the charter president of Southeast’s Lambda Theta Chapter of Sigma Theta Tau International Honor Society of Nursing. She is currently a member of the Jane Stephens Honors Program faculty.
“Dr. Heitman has been a long-time and productive member of our faculty, and directly responsible for developing and teaching the critical care course for many Southeast students,” said Dr. Gloria Green, chair of Southeast’s Department of Nursing. “Her knowledge and expertise also serve the University in the vital role of health care liaison for the entire faculty and staff. She has helped many employees and families successfully navigate the health care system when their needs are complicated and overwhelming.”
She has been featured in an array of scholarly publications, and is a reviewer for “The Journal of Cardiovascular Nursing.” She has presented both nationally and internationally on clinical nursing topics.
Heitman owns and manages a consulting service in advanced practice nursing, and has served as a consultant for the critical care units of SoutheastHEALTH and Saint Francis Medical Center.
She is currently working on a grant with Mid America Transplant Association in St. Louis to develop an online learning program on organ donation for undergraduate nursing students in the 72 schools of nursing in their service region.
Those selected for the Saint Louis University Alumni Merit Award are alumnae and alumni who have listed the mission of Saint Louis University in daily life and who have achieved outstanding success in civic leadership, professional and social welfare activities, and intellectual and cultural pursuits, and have continued interest and service toward supporting the enhancement of Saint Louis University.