NSNA on the Worcester Campus

The National Student Nursing Association is a national student nurse organization found in 50 states and has over 60,000 members. The goal of NSNA is to create a platform where all students preparing for their initial licensure as registered nurses and those pursuing their baccalaureates can be mentored, preparing them to lead the profession in the future. In addition to that, NSNA serves for an advocate for nursing education advancement. NSNA holds an annual convention and mid-year national conferences to discuss issues pertaining to the profession and what improvements can be made. Visit https://www.nsna.org/about-nsna.html to get information about the organization and some of its amazing benefits. 

The membership dues are $37 a year, $70 for two years. Some perks that come with membership are access to a network of professionals and mentors, online educational resources, and webinars, NCLEX prep as well as discounts on scrubs and nursing equipment. Currently, NSNA meetings are held via zoom twice a month. The organization is governed by a set of by laws which will be presented to you upon request and when you join. See you at our next meeting.

Joane-Shirley Eshun, Past NSNA President

If you are interested in doing the NSNA in Worcester, please contact Nick Benham at nbenh2@stu.mcphs.edu

Joane-Shirely Eshun

Nursing Students Without Boarders on the Worcester Campus

Nursing Students Without Borders (NSWB) is an organization founded in 1999 that provides nursing students with the opportunity to help underserved communities locally and abroad. In addition, the organization aims to promote health education, donation, awareness, and creating access to health care both nationally and internationally.

Since the organization’s establishment, NSWB has planned several trips within the United States and worldwide to provide exceptional nursing care while expanding our cultural awareness. In the past, the MCPHS Worcester campus’ branch of NSWB has participated in service trips to Ecuador, awareness walks, Destress fest, Camp Sunshine, Red Cross Blood Drive, a donation drive with hotel grace, and many more.

While giving back to the community, the NSWB provides students with leadership experiences, cultural competence, communication skills, teamwork competences which are all skills that are critical for future nurses.

“Service work has always been a great passion of mine.  When deciding on applying to the MCPHS nursing program, I was drawn to the ability to give back to the community. In the past, I have had the opportunity to volunteer with Habitat for humanity, Sickle Cell Disease Foundation, Be the match foundation, and Alzheimer’s Association. NSWB provided me with the opportunity to continue to serve the community. Simultaneously, I have developed more empathetic and collaborative skills useful for my future career as a nurse”

 -Sandra Donkor, NSWB N3 Past President.

COVID-19 has had a tremendous impact on the world. Unquestionably, coronavirus has had a significant effect on NSWB. Since the pandemic started, we have taken several measures to prevent the virus’s spread. As many organizations moved their services online, closed, and limited the number of volunteers, NSWB has adapted to different ways of serving the community. Additionally, we have had to consider not everyone can get online or is comfortable with video calls for educational sessions.

We are excited as we are now back on campus. Our upcoming plans include donating food items to hotel grace, organizing a MCPHS merchandise raffle, and many more. We are looking forward to planning several events on and off-campus and would love to have some new members.

To be a member of NSWB, students must attend two meetings a semester with no membership fees. Emails are usually sent with Zoom links ahead of time by the secretary for general body meetings. We are looking forward to a great semester and giving back to the community. The NSWB also has an Instagram page, @nswb.worcester with frequent updates about the organization. We hope to recruit some new members and look forward to electing new E-board members from the N1-cohort!

If you are interested in learning more about NSWB, please contact Nick Benham at nbenh@stu.mcphs.edu

Sandra Donker

Boston Welcomes a New ADMINISTRATIVE Assistant

Please join us in welcoming Jeff Smith, who joins the MCPHS School of Nursing in Boston as the Administrative Assistant to the baccalaureate program. Jeff reports that he is a Connecticut native and graduate of the Wentworth Institute of Technology and currently resides in Boston. When he is not working he enjoys traveling, concerts, and performing stand up comedy in the New England area and beyond. Welcome, Jeff!

Jeff Smith

Students Presented at the NHNA Annual Meeting

Laura Pohl and Nicole Ineson presented their experiences with advocacy they encountered during the pre-meeting for the New Hampshire Nurses Association Annual Meeting in December. The students applied theoretical concepts about nursing advocacy during their Leadership course. Laura discussed how her attendance at a community meeting to discuss the merger of Granite One with Dartmouth Hitchcock sparked her interest in advocacy. Her key takeaway was that no nurses were at the table or included in panelists, yet the decisions being made profoundly impacted nurses directly. Laura wrote an advocacy letter the New Hampshire Director of Charitable Trusts who is overseeing the merger; expressing her concern about the need for safe staffing for nurses across these facilities. Nicole discussed her interests in creating a uniform competency training for burn care after discovering that standards or care varied within different healthcare systems. She wrote an opinion editorial to the American Journal of Nursing which will be published in an upcoming issue.

Congratulations Laura and Nicole.

St Agnes Thanksgiving Basket drive

The School of Nursing was honored to participate in this annual event along with other programs to prepare a basket of Thanksgiving items for families at the Guild of St. Agnes in Worcester. The Massachusetts College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences prepared over 50 baskets! Professor Catherine Carroca along with nursing students Sandra Donkor, Morgan Garrabrant and Danielle Patton, assisted with loading the St. Agnes vans with all of the collected baskets. The School of Nursing looks forward to serving our community next year.

Celebrating our nurse practitioners

Last week was Nurse Practitioner Week. The American Association of Nurse Practitioners (AANP)  provides a forum to celebrate the most trusted profession in the United States. Dr. Barabra Frechette, the Director and Associate Professor of our online Nurse Practitioner program was interviewed.

As a certified nurse practitioner, it is my privilege to be part of this sacred profession.  What I love most about being a nurse practitioner is a commitment to ensuring inclusion, ending racial systemic injustice, and providing equitable, holistic healthcare care to the underserved. As noted in the AANP proclamation, over one billion patients a year received excellent, affordable healthcare by nurse practitioners. A notable distinction of the profession is to provide a substantive proportion of care to patients who have Medicare and Medicaid. Nurse practitioners are an important voice for vulnerable populations. 

Barbara Frechette, DNP, PMHNP‑BC

Thank you Dr. Frechette. A special thank you to all of the amazing faculty in our NP program, our interim Dean, Dr. Tammy Gravel for your leadership, and to all of our graduates for what you do everyday to make a difference!

Thank you for your sacrifice and service

The School of Nursing would like to take this opportunity to thank all past and present veterans for their sacrifice, service and dedication to our nation. We are honored to give back and serve you as a partner in health.

Victoria Richard, Kelly McCabe and Adam Carey provide foot care while Margaret Cowels, Jonathan Hurley, and Raymond Magner assist with sanitation
Operation Stand Down (L to R) Ashleigh Sturgis, Ashley Martin, Kim Benemelis, Courtney Alsdorf, Olivia Carbone, and Maiya Raggiani with 2 thankful Veterans

Student Spotlight: Tiffany Deschamps

Tiffany Deschamps

This month, the MCPHS School of Nursing would like to highlight Tiffany Deschamps, a Spring 2021 graduate, for the wonderful work she accomplished as part of her Advocacy Project in her Leadership class. Tiffany served as a wonderful advocate to the local community in her fundraising work with Hotel Grace, a seasonal local shelter in the Worcester community. Tiffany held a virtual fundraiser with Net of Compassion, which funds Hotel Grace and other programs, and raised $2,903 dollars. Tiffany was asked to share a statement for this article:

My name is Tiffany Deschamps and I live in the heart of Worcester, MA. Currently studying as a Nursing Student at MCPHS University. I began my nursing journey in 2020 when the pandemic hit the Country and everything the world over changed. I went from attending in person class, clinical rotations, labs, and group meeting to a completely isolated world of virtual classes and zoom meetings (I also had to return home after only a few months of living on campus). Around the Fall of 2020, my cohort was called back to the campus and clinical rotations in person started a new. I moved back to Worcester and began noticing how the pandemic impacted the community I once lived in. 

The changes did not hit me until I stumbled across a group of people huddled together for warmth and sharing food. Before the pandemic, I had never seen these people. It was heartbreaking to see a group of people struggling and as time progressed it seemed the group of people grew in numbers. Listening to lectures and watching local news, I learned the pandemic had increased the struggle of many people, not only in my community, but across the country. Many people continued to suffer with the pandemic and one of the leading causes is not being able to access resources. As a nursing student and a member of the community, I believed we needed to come together and help one another through this difficult time. 

Researching resources, I came across a local shelter, Hotel Grace. What interested me about this organization is the resources they provide to the community. This organization provides: shelter, clothes, and food to those in need in the Worcester area. I contacted the Founder of Hotel Grace, Richard Gonzales and Social Media Coordinator, Brain Ashmankas. We established a common goal to help the members of the Worcester Community. I worked with NSWB and Campus life (with the help of Garland Mann-Lamb) to develop a donation link (through Net of Compassion).

I hope to inspire others to reinvest and connect to their community through their own personal connections; whether it be through academics, friends, families, neighbors, or any other personal connections and working towards a goal to improve their local community. One of my favorite quotes is by Florence Nightingale, “So never lose an opportunity of urging a practical beginning however small, for it is wonderful how often in such matters the mustard seed germinates roots itself”.

This event would not have been made possible without the support of MCPHS community and faculty, Nets of Compassion Founder Richard Gonzales and Social Media Coordinator Brain Ashmankas. A special Thank you to Interim Dean Tammy Gravel and our administrative assistant Diane Hamilton, Faculty Advisors Professor Stephanie Haynes and Professor Christine McNulty Buckley and the Director of Campus Life, Student affairs Garland Mann-Lamb for their support and guidance throughout the project development. 

For more information about Hotel Grace, a faith based seasonal emergency shelter located at the Monsignor Tinsley Center, 44 Vernon Street, Worcester, MA or if you would like to donate please visit:https://www.netofcompassion.org/hotel-grace.html

Faculty Spotlights

The School of Nursing at MCPHS is proud of our faculty accomplishments. This month we would like to highlight faculty for their scholarly work to advance the profession of nursing.

Dr. Stephanie DesRoches and Dr. Carla Smith presented at the COF Teaching and Learning Conference  “What 2020 Has Taught Us: Lessons Learned and Moving Forward” which takes place virtually on Thursday, March 11 

Dr. Street’s article, “Developing Nursing Leadership Potential through Education in a Low Resource Setting” was accepted for upcoming publication by the journal, Nurse Educator.

Professor Stefanie Haynes

Professor Haynes article, “Cross-Disciplinary Narratives on COVID-19: Local Perspectives from Global Health Science Graduate Students” was published by the International Journal of Nursing and Health Care Research in February. 

School of Nursing Pinning Ceremony for our 2020 Graduates

The MCPHS School of Nursing held a virtual pinning ceremony on the Boston, Manchester, and Worcester campuses to celebrate the milestone accomplishment of our 375 BSN and 74 MSN student graduates on February 26th. Graduates were pinned at home by themselves or family members live or sent in video footage of the event at home. Nursing faculty were in attendance to congratulate our graduates from the May and December graduating classes of 2020. Awards were also announced for the BSN program graduates on each campus.

History of the Pin

Florence Nightingale
Florence Nightingale

The modern pinning ceremony dates back to the 1860s, when Florence Nightingale was awarded the Red Cross of St. George medal in recognition for her tireless service to the injured during the Crimean War. After receiving the honor of the red cross, Nightingale decided to share the honor and started the tradition of presenting a medal of excellence to her brightest graduates. This practice was extended to honor all graduates of nursing training.  

Our MCPHS School of Nursing Pins

Our pins at MCPHS display the college seal. It evokes a long history associated with the education of health professionals. At the top of the pin you’ll see a mortar and pestle on a scroll representing the university’s original mission as the nation’s oldest college of pharmacy. The bottom of the pin shows a scale symbolizing the balance of scientific reasoning and critical thinking. The final area on your pin is the book of knowledge. Representing the integration of your education in arts and sciences with your professional nursing education. Encircling your pin is the name of the university and the founding date of MCPHS Boston’s oldest institution of higher education, steeped in history that graduates are now a part of. By 1916, the ceremony awarding pins to new graduates was standard throughout the U.S. 

BSN Student Awards

Academic Achievement Award

  • Given by the MCPHS University Alumni Office​
  • commitment to academics

White Coat Award

  • Awarded to the graduating BSN student, who best exemplifies professionalism and demonstrates the ability to inspire and lead others for the benefit of fellow students.

Florence Nightingale Award

  • Awarded to the graduating BSN student who has exemplified clinical excellence throughout their tenure in the SON
  • Based on information on student clinical performance from adjunct clinical faculty and preceptors as well as lab/simulation faculty

Commitment to Service Award

  • Awarded to the graduating BSN student who has demonstrated a strong commitment to the SON, Community and University (or campus)

President’s Commitment to Diversity Award

  • Awarded to the graduating BSN student who best exemplifies cultural competence in relationships with patients, families, peers, and the community 

Boston BSN Student Awards

The academic achievement award recipients were Grace Weintraub (05/20)and Jilian McCormack (12/20). The White Coat Award recipients were Kayla Garguilo (05/20) and Veronica Malinn (12/20). The Florence Nightingale Award recipients were Hayley Bean (05/20) and Delanie Burgess (12/20). The Commitment to Service Award recipients were Michael Kennedy (05/20) and Catherine Minahan (12/20). The President’s Commitment to Diversity Award recipients were Prudence Kubiwamana (5/20) and Hyun Hwang (12/20).

Manchester BSN Student Awards

The academic achievement award recipients were Anne Browne (05/20)and Kristen Morgan (12/20). The White Coat Award recipients were Graham Phelps (05/20) and Ian Samuelson (12/20). The Florence Nightingale Award recipients were Jessica Lemos (05/20) and Jason Chen (12/20). The Commitment to Service Award recipients were John Fahey (05/20) and Jacob Esparza (12/20). The President’s Commitment to Diversity Award recipients were Alejandro Baltazar (5/20) and Ann Klitsch (12/20).

Worcester BSN Student Awards

The academic achievement award recipients were Grace Weintraub (05/20)and Erik Meskin (12/20). The White Coat Award recipients were Christian Broom(05/20) and Jamaal Gary (12/20). The Florence Nightingale Award recipients were Megan Bossie Capowski (05/20) and Samantha Bonfiglio  (12/20). The Commitment to Service Award recipients were Philip Duncan-Emmons (05/20) and Brittany Yoder (12/20). The President’s Commitment to Diversity Award recipients were Akie Toyama (5/20) and Xavier Simon (12/20).

Congratulations to all of our graduates and award recipients. We are so proud of your accomplishment and welcome you all into our wonderful profession of nursing.