Fiona Erickson
Jun 15, 2015 · 3 min read

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As an inbound marketing coordinator, I produce content for both Nursing@Georgetown and Nursing@Simmons. This entails ideating content calendars, writing, sourcing, and designing assets for the blog and social campaigns.

A Moving Morning

The crowd moved pretty slowly as they trickled in and out before the panel. A few sleepy souls searched for coffee on the periphery as the panelists made their way to the front of the room. Christy Stanford, the panel’s moderator, began with introductions of the students who came to share their perspective with us. Yohanana, Christine and Jennifer attended to speak about social work programs; Alyssa and Jackie spoke about being nursing program alumnae. Before long, the air was charged and the tone was emotional.

The attendees I spoke to expected to hear about the student experience, or about the programs themselves, and instead we were treated to a large-scale demonstration of appreciation.

Pictured from left to right: Jackie Anderson, Alyssa McClurg, Christine Wells, Jennifer Barnes, Yohanna Brown, and Christy Stanford.

The topics were varied, from why they chose their program to what terrified them about placements. Scope of practice was a common theme, as was the rigor of the courses and the necessity of a balanced workload. But the most touching portions of the morning came when the students were asked about their interactions with our student-facing departments.

The Team Behind Each Student

All of the students had someone to thank or give a shout out to. Alyssa McClurg had two stories of dedication that resulted in many requests for Kleenex. The way she described her application starts with Jay Lach, her student support advisor, who called her to congratulate her after a technical glitch resulted in Alyssa not knowing she had been accepted. Two days later, McClurg’s hometown in Colorado experienced the most devastating wild fire in its history: “500 houses burned down, and two people died.”

“He called and checked on me multiple times, and said everyone here at the office hopes you’re doing well — I didn’t even know any of you yet, and here was this man, checking in on my wellbeing. You made a big difference at a really scary, stressful time of my life.”

She continued on to talk about Sarah and Jody, who helped her manage her stress and classwork after her mom was diagnosed with breast cancer. “I was able to go to California to be with my mom and not have to call out of class. And again, people were checking in on me, telling me I could do it, that I could be there for my mom.” It didn’t just mean a lot to Alyssa, but also to her mother. “My mom was a diploma RN, she never had a degree, so it was very important to her that I keep going to classes, and it wouldn’t have been possible to do both. For the checking in and the checking up, thank you.”

Fiona Erickson

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Often tweet about news, feminism, social justice and cats.

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