Sharon Fruh PhD, RN, FNP-BC, FAANP

Sharon Fruh PhD, RN, FNP-BC, FAANP

Professor; Associate Dean for Research, Development, and Evaluation


  • PhD, University of Illinois at Chicago (Nursing), 1995
  • MS, Rush University (Nursing), 1983
  • BA, Bethany University (Psychology), 1980
  • ADN, Triton College (Nursing), 1977

Specialized Training

  • Certificate, University of Alabama (UAB), NIH-NIMHD Health Disparity Research Scholar Program, 2016

Research Interests

  • Nursing college student wellness and obesity prevention
  • Reducing health disparities in minority children and their families
  • Family-based obesity prevention and health promotion in community settings
  • Child obesity prevention with a focus on the home food environment and family meals
  • Healthy eating interventions

Ongoing Research Support

  • 1UL1 TR001417 (2019-2022) National Center for Advancing Translational Research, UAB Center for Clinical and Translational Science USA Translational Research Service Center Sub-award Role: Co-Investigator-USA Consortium, Co-Lead>

  • Research and Scholarship Development Grant Internal Grant (RSDG): (2019-2022) University of South Alabama. Healthy Student, Happy Nurse: A Longitudinal Investigation of Nursing Students' Health-Related Behaviors to Promote Professional Well-being. Principal Role: (Co-Principal Investigator) $22,794

  • Research and Scholarship Development Grant (RSDG): (2019-2022)-University of South Alabama. College Student Success and Persistence: An Interdisciplinary Longitudinal Study of Risk and Protective Factors Principal Role: (Co-Investigator) $24,330.00

Completed Research Support

  • College of Nursing Dean’s Grant, University of South Alabama
    The goal of this project was to identify the knowledge and practice habits of primary care providers and graduate nursing students related to frequent healthy family meals.
    Role: PI
  • Center for Healthy Communities: NIH P20 Pilot Project
    P20MD002314 (Errol Crook PI) 09/07-06/12
    06/11-06/12-Family Meal Barriers and Strategies that Promote Healthy Frequent Family Meals in African American Families. The goal of this project was threefold:
    1. Assess barriers to family meals
    2. Identify family meal habits and home offerings of food, and
    3. Evaluate the effect of an intervention program. The population was focused on minorities who reside in health disparity zip codes.

Role: Pilot Project - PI

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Selected Publications

  • Fruh, S., Williams, S., Hauff, C., Graves, R. J., Hauff, C., Williams, S.G & Hall, H. (Accepted 2021). Weight bias and stigma: Impact on health. Nursing Clinics of North America.
  • Fruh, S. M., Taylor, S. E., Graves, R. J., Hayes, K., McDermott, R., Hauff, C., Williams, S. G., Sittig, S., Campbell, M., Hudson, G., Hall, H. Melynk, B. M., & Barinas, J. L. (2021). Relationships among hope, body satisfaction, wellness habits, and stress in nursing students. Journal of Professional Nursing, 37, 640-647. (*, #)
  • Ard, J., Fitch, A., Fruh, S., & Herman, L. (2021). Weight loss and maintenance related to the mechanism of action of glucagon-like peptide 1 receptor agonists. Advances in Therapy, 1-19.
  • Hayes, K., Davis, A., Zlomke, K., & Fruh, S. (2021). Importance of family connection for healthy weight behaviors amid adverse family experiences and behavioral difficulties. Journal of Developmental and Behavioral Pediatrics: JDBP. DOI: 10.1097/dbp.0000000000000954; PMID: 33908379
  • McDermott, R. C., Fruh, S. M., Williams, S., Hauff, C., Sittig, S., Wright, T., Riley, B., Swanzy, D., Graves, R. J., & Hall, H. (2021). Characteristics of negative and positive mental health among nursing students in the United States. Journal of the American Psychiatric Nurses Association, 27(1), 44-53.; PubMed PMID: 31347437; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC7094773. (*, #)
  • Graves, R. J., Williams, S. G., Hauff, C., Fruh, S. M., Sims, B., Hudson, G. M., McDermott, R. C., Sittig, S., Shaw, T., Campbell, M., Barinas, J. L., & Hall, H. R. (2020). Undergraduate versus graduate nursing students: Differences in nutrition, physical activity, and self-reported body mass index. Journal of American College Health. (*, #)
  • Hauff, C., Fruh, S. M., Sims, B. M., Williams, S. G., Herf, C., Golden, A., Graves, R. J., Minchew, L.A., & Hall, H. R. (2020). Nurse practitioner students’ observations of preceptor engagement in obesity management and weight bias: A mixed methods approach. Journal of the American Association for Nurse Practitioners, 32(7), 520-529.; PMID: 32590444; PMCID: PMC7451910. (*, #)
  • Fruh, S., Williams, S., Hayes, K., Hauff, C., Hudson, G. M., Sittig, S., Graves, R. J., Hall, H., & Barinas, J. (2020). A practical approach to obesity prevention: Healthy home habits. Journal of the American Association of Nurse Practitioners. Advance online publication.; PMID: 33534281 (*, #)
  • Hayes, K., Williams, S. G., Fruh, S., Graves, R. J., Minchew, L. A., & Hall, H. R. (2020). Sleep, screen time, and family meal frequency in preschool children: A pilot study. The Nurse Practitioner, 45(8), 35-41.; PMID: 32701879; PMCID: PMC7451921 (*, #)
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  • Dr. Fruh coordinates the Nursing Honors Program.
  • Dr. Fruh mentors doctoral students with publications, scholarship, and grant writing.

Honors and Awards

  • Alabama State Nurses Association Citation of Excellence Award, Mobile, AL, 2019
  • The Sally Steadman Azalea Chapter of the Mortar Board Honor Society, 15th Annual Top Professor Award, 2018
  • Faculty Scholarship Award, University of South Alabama, College of Nursing, 2011
  • Sigma Theta Tau, Zeta Gamma Chapter, Research Award, Mobile, AL, 2010
  • Awarded Young Alumnus of the Year at Bethany University, 2001
  • Golden Key National Honor Society, University of South Alabama Chapter, 1997
  • Awarded the College of Nursing Dean’s Award for a Doctoral Student for Superior Academic and Research Achievement in the Graduate Nursing Program, University of Illinois at Chicago, 1995
  • U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Fifth Annual Secretary’s Award for Innovation in Health Promotion and Disease Prevention: Nutrition and exercise program for urban Native Americans, 1987
  • Awarded the College of Nursing Dean’s Award to a Graduate Student for Superior-Academic Leadership in the Graduate Nursing Program, Rush University, 1983