Irma Aguilar-Coker

PhD, RN , Doctoral (Alumni)

Director of Nursing Program 
Tarrant Community College
Fort Worth, TX

Dr. Aguilar-Coker is a teacher and scholar, a researcher, and a leader in nursing and mental health care. She has devoted much of her professional life to teaching young individuals who are interested in nursing, but specifically, psychiatric nursing. As a scholar and leader, she has pursued her passion in several Texas Universities, and the community college systems. At the University of Texas, Southwestern Medical Center, she accepted a fellowship and conducted research in the Sleep Study Unit, where she was able to expand her thinking and enhance her experiences in this special area of research.

Regarding her research, several interlocking themes emerge. Sleep and insomnia, depression, cultural issues, chronic mental illness, death and dying, as well as other cogent topics that are interrelated and may be manifest differently across various ethnic/minority and Caucasian groups. Her research on "The Sleep Architecture of Clinically Depressed Caucasian, Hispanic, and African American People" is frequently cited in the scientific and clinical literature. Dr. Aguilar-Coker's focus on sleep research continues to dominate her thinking as she still makes contributions to nursing science.

Dr. Aguilar-Coker is also a consultant to numerous mental health related programs such as the Hospice of the Southwest; Clinical Sleep Consultant; Southwestern Medical Center; and various other professional organizations. She participates in the Southern Nursing Research Society; serves as a Hospice Nurses Association National Board Member; is a member of the Association of Professional Sleep Societies; the American Nurses Association; the Texas Nurses Association, and others. Requests for her professional consultation and scientific presentations are ongoing and numerous.

Honors and recognitions for her contributions to nursing occur regularly. She is a member of the Texas Hall of Fame; recipient of the Sleep Researchers Society Award; member, Delta Kappa Chapter of Sigma Theta Tau, Who's Who in American Women, and the Mexican-American League for Defense and Educational Fund.