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Professor Hugh McKenna

Dean of Medical School Development

School/Department
Medical School
Research Institute
Institute of Nursing and Health Research
Campus
Jordanstown campus
Location
Room 08K31
Shore Road
Newtownabbey
Co. Antrim
BT37 0QB
Telephone
+44 28 9036 8457
Email
hp.mckenna@ulster.ac.uk
Profile image of Professor Hugh McKenna

Professor Hugh P. McKenna CBE, PhD, B.Sc(Hons), RMN, RGN, RNT, DipN(Lond), AdvDipEd, FFN RCSI, FEANS, FRCN, FAAN

Teaching and Research

He is Dean of Medical School Development at Ulster University. He recently stepped down from a five-year period of being Pro Vice Chancellor for Research and Innovation. Prior to that, for seven years, he was Dean of the Faculty of Life and Health Sciences and before that he spent five years as Head of School of Health Sciences.

He has over 250 publications including 10 books and over £4 million in grants and has supervised 16 PhD students to successful completion.

His published work has been cited over 8,000 times.

Industry Engagement

Hugh has been a board member of several national research funding organisations (UK’s Parkinson’s Disease Society, National Institute of Health Research, Cancer Focus etc.).

He currently chairs NIAMH, the largest Mental Health, Learning Disability and Addiction Charity in Ireland. He has been a non-executive Director for the Patient and Client Council since 2009 and chairs their Research Committee. He is a fellow of the Royal College of Nursing (FRCN), Fellow of the European Academy of Nursing (FEAN) and Fellow of the Royal College of Surgeons of Ireland, (FRCSI). Until Sept 2016, he chaired Innovation Ulster Limited, a venture capital subsidiary company, the Steering Committee of the Economic and Social Research Council’s Administrative Data Research Centre and on the Boards of NI Science Park, the Medical Research Council’s Methodological Hub and MATRIX, Northern Ireland’s Science Industry Panel. In 2009-2014, he chaired the 2014 UK Research Excellence Framework panel for nursing, allied health professions, pharmacy and dentistry, which made decisions on the allocation of many millions of pounds in research funding to UK universities.

He had chaired the previous exercise in 2008. He currently chairs the Hong Kong Council for Accreditation and previously chaired the Swedish Research Council’s Health Sciences panel. He is also a committee member of the Swedish Research Council’s international research assessment advisory panel. He was previously an executive member of the UK Council of Deans of Health.

He co-founded and served on the committee of an International Doctoral Education Network, representing 34 countries. Currently, he is a member of the International Scientific Advisory Board for King’s College London and an Adjunct/Visiting Professor in the University of Maribor, Slovenia, University of Technology, Sydney, Australia, and Trinity College Dublin, Ireland and is Head of the Visiting Committee at the Nethersole School in the Chinese University of Hong Kong.

For 5 years, he was adjunct professor at the University of Texas. In 2014, he co-founded the UK Military Veterans and Emergency Services Committee and the RCN’s Defence Nurses’ Network.

Awards

In 2008 her Majesty the Queen appointed him Commander of the British Empire (CBE) for his work on health and community. In the same year he received a Senior Distinguished Researcher award. In 2013, he was presented with the Outstanding Achievement Award by the Royal College of Nursing and in 2014, he was presented with a lifetime achievement Award at the Institute of Psychiatry in London.

In 2009, he was made an International Fellow of the American Academy of Nursing (FAAN) – only the third person in Europe and the fifteenth worldwide to be given this honour.

Research Interests

His research interests include doctoral education, mental health care, suicide prevention, and the health care workforce. In October 2016, he is to be awarded an Honorary Degree by Edinburgh Napier University, Scotland.