Tag Archives: Nursing

Health Policy Intensive course focuses on homelessness

The Breen School of Nursing offered a new course for undergraduate students this year – titled the Health Policy Intensive (HPI). The course was available for Junior level nursing students. Unlike regular courses, this intensive began just after finals ended, and included adventures around Cleveland and in Washington, D.C.

Comprised of eight students and two faculty members, the group learned what homelessness is like here in Cleveland. The group specifically worked with Bellefaire JCB to discover what homeless youths experience. In addition, the pre-trip portion of the intensive also included learning about life at the Lakeside Men’s Shelter.

The class traveled to Washington, D.C. for a four-day whirlwind trip that covered a wide range of informational activities and meetings. On the first day, the group began the trip with a discussion on public policy and how it relates to homelessness. The group was also able to meet with two legislative aids to discuss some of the public policy issues relating to homelessness. One of the students on the trip, Rachel Jalowiec, said, “I was shocked at how people paid such little attention to homelessness. When we were talking to the congressmen, they were throwing out these ideas, and from what we’d learned, we knew that they would never work.”

The second day of the trip was a tour of Catholic Charities USA in Alexandria, VA, where the class met with a public policy analyst and a lobbyist from Catholic Charities over a lunch meeting. The third day of the trip got more hands-on, with the class taking a tour of the National Institute of Health. There, they met with representatives from the nursing department as well as toured various wards. This gave the students the opportunity to see the nursing end of healthcare for those in difficult situations. In addition, the group met with Brian Carome, one of the leaders of an organization called Street Sense, which puts out a bi-weekly newspaper written by and for homeless people. This organization also helps to give the homeless marketable skills and employment by helping them contract for graphic art and other similar projects.

The HPI group at Christ House in Washington, D.C.

The HPI group at Christ House in Washington, D.C.

The final day of the trip was the one that hit the hardest. The group of students went to Christ House, which according to Mary Lind Crowe, one of the faculty members on the trip, is “a men’s only facility that accepts and provides care for homeless people that have chronic and/or debilitating illness once they are discharged from the hospital.”

About the trip to Christ House, Jalowiec said, “That was my favorite part, because it was more emotional than I thought it was going to be. The people were so kind, and they’ve lived hard lives.”

When asked about why it is important for students that are looking to go into healthcare, and especially nursing, to learn about homelessness, Crowe said, “The concept of homelessness is very relevant for nursing – we could encounter these people every day in our job and not realize it unless we pay attention to details, like if the address they give is a homeless shelter. It’s also key to remember that medical bills are the leading cause of bankruptcy, and that being in our care means that they and/or their families see what their going through as a financial burden.”

Jalowiec said that the HPI experience really changed her perspective on homelessness and healthcare. She stated that she learned that “whether it be mental illness or drug addiction, it’s important for the homeless to get healthcare without being judged. One of the reasons that they end up waiting so long to get healthcare, besides not being able to afford it, is that they are afraid of being judged.” She added that, “there are so many stereotypes with the homeless, and hearing about their pasts really helped us learn not to judge them.”

The HPI trip definitely made a lasting impact on all of those involved. Jalowiec stated that although she’d always wanted to make a difference in the world, “this trip has gotten [me] to look into things more. On our way to Christ House, I was discussing everything with my professors, and we wondered if there were any similar programs in Cleveland. This trip made me want to get my degree and look into working for a program like Christ House after I graduate. This class made me want to make more of a difference.”

Breen School of Nursing Dean Pat Sharpnack discusses Ebola virus on WKYC-TV news

Tradition. Sophomore nursing students take part in ‘Blessing of the Hands’ ceremony

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Every year sophomore nursing students take part in a traditional ceremony called the Blessing of the Hands. This blessing ceremony is a beautiful experience and valuable to students as they embark on their first clinical rotations. As a daughter of an Ursuline alumna, my mother, a registered nurse has learned through this experience to value the importance of empathy, compassion, strength and responsibility and has been guided by God to use her hands to heal those that suffer. Ursuline College, the only school in the region that holds this ceremony, wants this unique tradition to “touch the heart through the hands”. Through this ceremony, students will learn the importance of compassion and care toward patients and reflect on their upcoming responsibilities.

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Where they are now: Inspirational Alumnae – Linda Lewicki, RN, SJC ‘74

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Linda Lewicki, RN, SJC ’74 has had a diverse nursing career. Lewicki, currently senior nurse researcher at the Cleveland Clinic, previously worked as clinician, educator, administrator and researcher. Because of her outstanding professional experience, she was recently awarded a 2013 Lifetime Achievement Award from the Cleveland Clinic Ziolony Nursing Institute. As Lewicki celebrates her 40th anniversary of graduation from St. John College this year, we asked her to reflect on her inspiring career.

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Covergirl: Miss Student Nurse 1955

helen hardy2In the February 1957 issue of Cosmopolitan magazine, you will find a photo essay titled, “Student Nurse,” featuring St. John College alumna Helen Harding ’56 S.J. The lead reads: “Nursing isn’t glamorous or easy but Helen Harding learned in four years of giving baths, scrubbing wards, witnessing pain and death that she had met the challenge of her life. Here is the story of the rewarding career of a nurse.”

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A Fond Farewell to Christine Wynd

wyndSt. John College graduate, Dr. Christine Wynd, Ph.D., RN ’74SJ, Dean of the Breen School of Nursing and Strawbridge Professor since 2007, recently left the College to accept the position of President and Dean of The Mount Carmel College of Nursing in Columbus, Ohio.

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Ursuline~St. John College Alumnae Assocation honors two outstanding alumnae for service and dedication

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The Ursuline ~ St. John College Alumnae Association recently held its reunion celebration, where two outstanding alumnae – Jane Soposky ’74 SJ and Sheryl Williams Zellner ’97 – were honored for their dedication to the College, service to the community and career achievements.

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Breen School of Nursing Professor Karen Link recognized by Ohio League for Nursing for work in mental health

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Breen School of Nursing professor Karen Link, RN, MSN, CNS, CNE has been awarded the Excellence in Teaching Award by the Ohio League for Nursing at the Annual OLN Education Summit. The educator selected for this award is chosen from nominees throughout the State of Ohio.

Link has been an educator for more than seven years, a clinical nurse specialist and a nurse for more than 40 years. Her passion for excellence in teaching and her specialty of psychiatric and mental health nursing is unparalleled. Link obtained the Certified Nurse Educator designation in 2013, demonstrating her commitment to teaching excellence.

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Sister Henrietta, CSA: An Example of Giving

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By Timothy K. Kinsella, Ph.D., head of the History Department and Director of the Master of Liberal Arts Program at Ursuline College. 

Sister Henrietta, CSA (1902-1983), serves as a wonderful example of an individual going outside of herself, in this case to help the invisible poor in the Hough area, an inner city neighborhood on Cleveland’s east side. Prior to her work in Hough, she had already developed intellectual and administrative skills through her past positions in hospital work, and combined them with her heart’s yearning of service to the poor.

Marie Gorris, Sister Henrietta’s baptismal name, entered the Sisters of Charity in 1925 shortly after receiving an R.N .degree from Canton’s Mercy Hospital School of Nursing. She then worked at Mercy Hospital and Timken Mercy Medical Center between 1928 and 1962. Examples of her many titles include; night supervisor, supervisor of surgery, head administrator, supervisor of construction, and fundraiser. These skills would later be of invaluable help in Hough.

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Ursuline kicks-off Women’s History Month with “Waiting for MacArthur” Feb 28, March 1

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Ursuline College Drama Workshop presents “Waiting for MacArthur,” a World War II story of the courage and valor of the women who served in the Army Nursing Corps on Corregidor, 8 PM Feb 28 and March 1 in the Mullen Little Theater, Mullen Academic Center, 2550 Lander Road, Pepper Pike, OH 44124.

Starring Ursuline students Rhianna McChesney, Haley Tinlin, Hannah Cotton and Natalie Huggins, the play revolves around the experiences of women during WWII, specifically an Army Nursing Corps nurse, her mother, her English teacher and her best friend.

According to Independent Press, playwright P. Paullette MacDougal’s “Waiting for MacArthur” is a “poignant look at love and war.” MacDougal dedicated her play to “The Greatest Generation”; the men and women whose sacrifice during WWII saved the world for liberty and freedom because it was “the right thing to do.”

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