Kathleen Brewer-Smyth, PhD, RN, CRRN, FAAN

Associate Professor
School of Nursing
313 McDowell Hall
Accepting PhD Students


Dr. Brewer-Smyth’s program of research focuses on adverse childhood experiences (ACEs) such as childhood abuse, hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis and neurological function, especially traumatic brain injury (TBI) related to high risk behaviors and health outcomes later in life. She has published on how these variables are related to adult obesity, HIV risk behaviors, suicide attempts, homicide, and other violent behaviors in populations at risk, especially female prison inmates. Her work has been supported by funding from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), National Institutes of Health (NIH), and Foundations including the University of Delaware Research Foundation (UDRF).


  • Postdoctoral Fellowship University of Pennsylvania
  • PhD University of Pennsylvania
  • MSN University of Pennsylvania, Adult Health and Illness, Neurology and Neurosurgery


University of Delaware:


  • NURS 411 Current Issues in Neuroscience 
  • NURS 443 Clinical Practicum
  • NURS 312  Pathopysiology
  • NURS 362 Research
  • NURS 460 Clinical Integration Seminar
  • NURS 241 Pathopysiology


  • NURS 668 Advanced Clinical Neuroscience 
  • NURS 609 Theory/Research
  • NURS 833 NURS SCI Special Topics


  • Post-traumatic neurobiology and behavior and associated epigenetic aging among adult female victims of trauma.  UD School of Nursing Supplemental Grant Award, 2020 – 2021       
  • Childhood Abuse, Salivary Cortisol, Alcohol Use, and Violent Behavior of Females: A Pilot Study. UD General University Research (GUR) Grant, PI: K. Brewer-Smyth  2019 – 2020.
  • National Science Foundation (NSF) ADVANCE Award HRD-1409472 Women in STEM – University of Delaware ADVANCE mini-grant   05/1/2016 – 09/1/2016
  • UD Institute for Global Studies. International Travel Award, 2014.
  • The Impact of Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) among Incarcerated Persons (U49) Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, (CDC) National Center for Injury Prevention and Control U49 CE001318 9/07-9/12 Co-I, Technical Oversight Committee (TOC) PI: E. Pickelsimer, Medical University of South Carolina
Honors and Awards
  • Inducted as a Fellow in the American Academy of Nursing (FAAN), 2014
  • American Nurses Association National Professional Issues Panel on Workplace Violence and Incivility Advisory Committee, 2014 – 2015
  • Association of Rehabilitation Nurses (ARN) Doctorate-Prepared Researcher Role Award, 2013