Thompson Rivers University

M. Star Mahara RN, MSN

Name: M. Star Mahara RN, MSN
Position: Associate Professor
Phone: 250-828-5441


Anti-racist, non-discriminatory nursing education and practice
Post-Secondary experience of Indigenous students
Indigenous peoples' health and well-being
Feminist and critical perspectives

Research Interests

Indigenous student success
Indigenous health human resources
Cultural safety/culturally safe dementia care with First Nations Elders

Research and Project Grants:

Duncan, S. (PI), O Mahony, J., Stade, S., Weatherman, K., Pitman, V., Sanders, T., Mahara, S., & Ringstad, K. Interior Health 2015 Evidence Informed Practice Grant Challenge. Public Health Nursing and Comprehensive School Health. 2015-2016. ($14,030)

Hulko, W. (PI), Antifeau, E., Varcoe,C., Mahara, M. Mills, J., & Anderson, B. Culturally Safe Dementia Care: Building Nursing Capacity to work with First Nation Elders. Michael Smith Foundation for Health Research BC Nursing Research Initiative Project. 2010-2014. ($213,700).

Harrowing, J., Gregory, D., Ferzacca, S., Hall, B., Holmes, V., Martin, D., Smith, D., Smye, V. & Varcoe, C. (2011). Culture, Pedagogy, and Practice: Establishing Evidence for Best Practices in Health Care Professions. CIHR Meetings, Planning and Dissemination Grant: Planning Grants. Role: Collaborator. ($19,023).

Mahara, S. (PI), Duncan, S., Kurtz, D.,& Anderson, B. Understanding and Supporting the Career Paths of Aboriginal Nursing Graduates. TRU School of Nursing/Interior Health Collaborative Practice-Education Research fund. ($32,085). (2010-2013).

Duncan, S., Mahara, S, Trawin, S., Brown, J., & Whyte, N. Integration of the 2009 Cultural Competence and Cultural Safety in Nursing Education: A Framework for First Nations, Inuit, and Metis Nursing at Thompson Rivers University. TRU Office of Aboriginal Education. ($10,000). (2009-2010).

Duncan, S., Mahara, S., Larson, G., Kaliszewski, G., Girouard, G., & Ignace, M. Collaborating for Success. Health Canada Aboriginal Health Human Resource Initiative Support Program ($104,000).

Holmes, V., Mahara, S., Duncan, S., Johansen, S., Johnson,R. & Ignace, M. Increasing Participation, Success,and Retention Rates of Aboriginal Students in Nursing. BC Ministry of Advanced Education Aboriginal Special Project Fund. ($99,843). 2007-2009.


2001: MSN University of British Columbia
Thesis: Understanding the Evaluative Practices of a Clinical Nurse Teacher: A Critical Descriptive-Exploratory Case Study

1980: Bachelor of Science in Nursing (Honours),University of British Columbia

1977: Registered Nurse Diploma,University of British Columbia


Sanders, T., O Mahony, J., Duncan, S., Mahara, S., Pitman, V., Ringstad, K., & Weatherman K. (2019). Opening the doors for school health An exploration of public health nurses capacities to engage in Comprehensive School Health programs. Public Health Nursing, 36, 348-356. doi:10.1111/phn.12607

Kurtz, D. L., Mahara, S., Cash, P., Nyberg, J., Patrick Moller, E. (2017). Indigenous methodology in understanding Indigenous nurse graduate transition to practice. International Indigenous Policy Journal, 8(4).

Duncan, S., Mahara, S., Holmes, V. (2014). Confronting the social mandate for nursing scholarship One school of nursing's journey. Quality Advancement in Nursing Education, 1(1), Article 2.

Zawaduk, C., Duncan, S., Mahara, M.S., et al. (2014). Mission possible: Twenty-five years of university and college collaboration in baccalaureate nursing education. Journal of Nursing Education, 53, 580-588.

Cash, P.A., Moffitt, P., Fraser, J., Grewal, S., Holmes, V., Mahara, S., et al. (2013). Writing reflexively to illuminate meanings of cultural safety. Reflective Practice: International & Multidisciplinary Perspectives, 14(6), 825-839.

Mahara, M. S., Duncan, S.M., Whyte, N., Brown, J. (2011). It takes a community to raise a nurse: Educating for culturally safe practice with Aboriginal peoples. International Journal of Nursing Education Scholarship, 8(1), Article 17.

Mahara, M. S., & Jones, J. A. (2005). Participatory inquiry with a colleague: An innovative faculty development process. Journal of Nursing Education, 44(3), 124-130.

Mahara, M. S. et al. (2005). Mentoring across the miles: Sharing with the land of the Dancing Lights. Canadian Nurse, 101(4), 22-25.

Mahara, M. S. (1998). A perspective on clinical evaluation in nursing education. Journal of Advanced Nursing, 28, 1339-1346.


Desnomie, T., Nowgesic, M., Mahara, S., Vukic, A., & Jansen, L. (2018). Reconciliation and indigenization in nursing education. Panel presentation. CASN Canadian Nursing Education Conference. Montreal, QC.

Blackstock, S., & Mahara. S. (2018). Faculty Mentorship: Coming to the Fire Curriculum Development with Indigenous Peoples. WNRCASN Conference: Reimagining Nursing Education: Innovations for the Future. Calgary, AB.

Bourque Bearskin, L., Mahara, M.S., Sanders, T., Julius, W., & Wenlock, J. (2017). Sustaining Indigenous knowledge in nursing education: Transformational collaborative practice. WNRCASN. Victoria, BC.

Hulko, W., Mahara, S., William, J., Patrick Moller, E., Campbell McArthur, G. (2014). Culturally safe dementia care: Building nursing capacity to care for First Nation Elders with memory loss. INIHKD Manitoba NEAHR International Indigenous Health Conference, Winnipeg, MB

Mahara, S., Hulko, W., Wilson, D., Campbell McArthur, G., & Patrick Moller, E. (2014). From Research to Practice: Developing and evaluating a nursing education program on culturally safe dementia care for Secwepemc Nation Elders. A.N.A.C. National Forum, Winnipeg, MB

Hulko, W., Wilson, D., Mahara, S., William, J, DeRose, C., & Michel-Evans, L. (2014). Increasing the capacity of nurses to care for Elders with memory loss in North and South Secwepemc communities: Socio-geographic difference. Symposium. IH 2014 Rural Health Services Conference, Kelowna, BC

Mahara, S., Kurtz, D., Nyberg, J., Patrick Moller, E., & Froste, A. (2013). Nurturing the nursing spirit: Understanding and supporting the career paths of Aboriginal nursing graduates. A.N.A.C. National Forum, Richmond, BC

Holmes, V., & Mahara, S. (2012). Approaching culture through equity, citizenship, and respectful relations: A borealis roundtable. CAEN Conference, Yellowknife, NT

Varcoe, C., Gregory, d., Smye, V., & Mahara, S. (2012). Sharing emerging perspectives on concepts of cultural competence, cultural safety, and equity. Panel. Cultural Competence and Cultural Safety in Nursing Education: A Knowledge Translation Symposium.CASN, Toronto, ON

Employment History

2017: Adjunct Assistant Professor, School of Nursing, University of Victoria

2009-present: Associate Professor, School of Nursing, TRU

2002-2009: Assistant Professor, School of Nursing, UCC/TRU

2004-2010: Visiting Lecturer, UBC School of Nursing.

1984-2002: Instructor, School of Nursing, Cariboo College/University College of the Cariboo: RN diploma program; BSN program; Coordinator and faculty Gerontological nursing courses, RN Refresher Program, and RPN/RN Access Program.

Courses Taught


NURS 1730 Health and Healing 1
NURS 3510 Nursing Practice 6
NURS 3730 Health and Healing 5
NURS 4210 Nursing Practice 8
NURS 5100 Knowledge for Advanced Nursing

Graduate Courses: UBC School of Nursing

NURS 503 Conceptual Knowledge in Nursing Practice
NURS 511 Theoretical Foundations of Nursing Practice

Professional Affiliations


Canadian Association of University Teachers. Dedicated Service Award (2018)
Canadian Association of Schools of Nursing. Award for Excellence in Nursing Education (2010)
College of Registered Nurses of British Columbia. Member Recognition Award (2008)
Thompson Rivers University Faculty Association Service Award (2006)


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