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Rachel Lyons

Associate Professor, School of Nursing

The School of Nursing and The Graduate School
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Dr. Lyons graduated from Columbia University (2007) with a Doctor of Nursing Practice and from Duquesne University (2022) with a Doctor in Philosophy in Nursing. As a certified acute care pediatric nurse practitioner, Dr. Lyons maintains her practice in a pediatric level one trauma center in Rhode Island. Dr. Lyons has experience identifying pediatric trauma risk factors and has implemented institutional, evidence based policy changes related to pediatric access to care. Research and practice interests include adolescent health, urban green space perception and use.


Practice: Pediatric Acute Care, Pediatric Nurse Practitioner
Research: Urban Greenspace and Adolescent Health


Research Projects

Urban Green Space Use Among Adolescents and Young Adults

The purpose of this integrative review explored how adolescents and young adults used the social determinant of the built environment, specifically greenspace, as a potential point of intervention to address mental health wellbeing. An integrative research review based on strategies described by Whittemore and Knafl (2005) was used. Peer reviewed, published research articles in English were identified using electronic databases CINAHL, PubMed, and EMBASE. Seventeen research reports using qualitative and/or quantitative methods with adolescent and young adults. Data were analyzed using the Matrix Method. The review elicited three themes related to the purpose and aims; elements of greenspace, activity variation and amenities. All themes shared a common element of quality, which influenced the perception of safety and greenspace use. The science of urban greenspace and adolescent-young adult mental wellbeing is still relatively new. Public health nurses can incorporate social determinants of health, such as the built environment in research to gain a greater understanding of how greenspace is to be used as an alternative health strategy to improve mental wellbeing.

Intersection of Ethnicity, Adolescence and Social Media

Secondary data analysis from Teen Relationship survey (PEW Research Center) exploring the relationship between ethnicity, adolescence and social media.