Experiences from conception to age six have the most important influence of any time in the life

Katherine Bright



Katherine is a second-year PhD student in Maternal-Child Health under the supervision of Dr. Nicole Letourneau. She completed Bachelor degrees in Kinesiology and Nursing, both from the University of Calgary.  She has a Masters degree in Nursing also from the University of Calgary. During her Master’s degree, she specialized in the transition into motherhood for women who had very low birth weight (VLBW) babies. In her Masters findings, there appeared to be a higher incidence of prenatal anxiety disorders as well as postpartum PTSD with mothers of VLBW babies.  In her PhD program, Katherine is expanding on her Masters findings and exploring the relationship between anxiety in pregnancy and disruptive externalizing behaviours.  She is looking at the potential of secure maternal-infant attachment to be a moderator of the association between prenatal anxiety and children’s behaviour.   Katherine’s long term aspiration is to develop a Perinatal Mental Health Care Plan for the Calgary Zone to assist health care professions with decision making for women struggling with mental health concerns in the perinatal period.  Through her studies, Katherine wants to increase Mental Health support to women to facilitate healthier pregnancies and healthier infants and children.