Friday, August 24, 2012

Fellowship inspires minority nurses


OVERCOMING OBSTACLES: Christian pins a corsage on Gil during the graduation ceremony.


“There’s one song that pops into my head when I look at this group of women,” said Rev. Daphne B. Noyes, MA, MGH staff chaplain. “It goes like this: ‘This little light of mine/I’m gonna let it shine. This little light of mine/I’m gonna let it shine ...’” And with that, the crowd attending the Hausman Fellowship 2012 graduation ceremony burst into song, finishing the rest of the verse: “This little light of mine, I’m gonna 
let it shine/Let it shine/Let it shine/
Let it shine!”

Nine women graduated from this year’s fellowship program and were celebrated at an Aug. 17 ceremony in the Schiff Conference Room in the Yawkey Center. The Hausman Fellowship was founded at the MGH in 2007 to promote the recruitment of minority nurses. During the six-week summer program, each fellow is paired with a MGH nurse mentor to provide meaningful clinical, practical and social learning experiences.

As the graduates walked across the room to receive their completion certificates, program volunteer LaDonna Christian, RN, MSN, APRN-BC, associate professor of nursing practice at Simmons School of Nursing and Health Sciences, read a program overview each of the fellows had written about their life-changing experience at the MGH. 

“I have overcome barriers of many kinds as a student of color but found strength to use these experiences as stepping stones,” wrote Villanova University student Jennifer Gil. “My experiences here at MGH as a Hausman Fellow have inspired me to direct my passion for helping others and further ignite a spark in other students, like myself, who faced the same obstacles to do the same.” 

As Penninah Alweny, a student at the MGH Institute of Health Professions, made her way across the stage, Christian read: “I am very happy to express my heartfelt thanks to the Hausman Fellowship for offering me what I could have never found or bought anywhere, which are confidence, assertiveness and exposure to many different nursing skills.”

For more information about the Hausman Fellowship program, contact Deborah Washington, RN, PhD, director of Diversity for Patient Care Services, at 617-724-7469 or 

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