Michelle O’Connor Kensey DNP, CNS, CNE


My philosophy of education is to create an environment of approachability as an instructor. I strive to facilitate student learning through classroom and clinical experiences where learning is a process. I hope to model professional behaviors of which I expect in my students as well. These behaviors include respect for one another, accountability for one’s actions, and responsibility as a learner and care provider. My goals in the classroom and clinical setting are to empower students to critically think, enable independence, and embody compassion in their work.


I graduated from Marquette University with a BSN in 1984, and University of Pennsylvania with an MSN as a Perinatal Clinical Nurse Specialist in 1989, and Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) from WCU in August 2018. I have over 35 years of experience in Labor & Delivery, NICU, antenatal, and postpartum nursing. I am a Certified Nurse Educator since 2013.


Courses taught at WCU include: Maternal-Child health Nursing and Special Topics in Nursing: Global Health in South Africa


  • American Heart Association CPR Course C for Professionals, expires June 2020. Pennsylvania - #RN-279429-L, expires October 31, 2018.
  • Brandywine Project-2018 - Selected participant. Attended Workshop January 10-11 but had to withdraw from project.
  • Association of Nurses for Healthy Environments (ANHE)- July7-8, 2015 Washington, DC Climate Fellowship.
  • President, La Comunidad Hispana (2005-2011)
  • Chester County Drug and Alcohol Advisory Board (2001-2006). Appointed 2001, elected as secretary 2005-2006.
  • Recognition for Leadership, La Comunidad Hispana, 2013
  • Chester County Board of Health (appointed Jan. 2016).
  • Office of Sponsored Research, 2006-2007 Academic Year Award for Participation in Sponsored Programs Activities, West Chester University of PA.
  • Office of Sponsored Research, 2004-2005 Academic Year Award for Participation in Sponsored Programs Activities, West Chester University of PA.
  • Pennsylvania State Nurses Association, 2003. Nurse as a Global Citizen Award.


My publications and interests include psychosocial determinants of maternal and infant health, global issues for maternal child health, improving breastfeeding rates among underserved populations, genetics, and sustainability in healthcare. Most recent publications and presentations below:

  • Kensey, M. (August, 2018). Evaluating a Practice Change Initiative to Promote Early Skin-to-Skin Contact after Cesarean Birth [doctoral thesis]
  • Kensey, M.O. (November, 2018). [Teaching Tip] Promoting Cultural Awareness with Reflective Writing. Nurse Educator 43(6).
  • Joseph, R., Kensey, M. (2018). Sustainability in the Context of the NICU. Neonatal Network, 37(4), 255-256. Doi: 10.1891/0730-0832.37.4.195
  • Kensey, M.O., Mandel, D. (2017). The Experience of Undergraduate Nursing Students in South Africa: Promoting Cultural Awareness with Reflective Writing. The 27th Biennial Sigma Theta Tau Conference, Indianapolis, Indiana. October 28-Novemebr 2, 2017. [international peer-reviewed podium presentation]


I am a long-standing member of Association of Women’s Health, Obstetric and Neonatal Nurses (AWHONN), Sigma Theta Tau, Xi Delta Chapter in a leadership position, NLN, and ANA. I remain clinically active as a staff nurse at a regional perinatal center in Philadelphia, and volunteer teaching childbirth education and parenting classes to marginalized clients at a local pregnancy crisis center.

I have co-facilitated a faculty-lead service learning study abroad course in Cape Town, South Africa, providing leadership and instruction to undergraduate students to deliver maternal newborn healthcare to marginalized populations in township clinics. I recently volunteered to facilitate undergraduate nursing students and medical students on a two-week medical mission trip to provide screenings and acute medical care to marginalized populations of the regions surrounding Guatemala City, Guatemala in May,2018.

Back to top of page.