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Sixteen UW Students Honored at Nursing Convocation

May 18, 2018
Sarah Boyer, Tamara Mason, Nicole McConnell and Joleen Watson

Sixteen recently graduated University of Wyoming Fay W. Whitney School of Nursing students were honored with awards during the school’s annual Nursing Convocation ceremony.

This year’s convocation took place May 11 in the UW College of Arts and Sciences auditorium. Nursing faculty selected the award recipients. Awards were given in 14 categories, with two categories each honoring two students.

Hometowns, winners, their majors and awards are:

-- Baggs: Sonia Klein, an accelerated Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) graduate in the Bachelors Reach for Accelerated Nursing Degree (BRAND) Program, Dorothy Tupper Senior Award. The award is given for demonstrating caring, compassion and interpersonal communication skills. Tupper joined the UW nursing faculty in 1952, serving as dean for several years. The award has been maintained with funds given by the class of 1962, in memory of Judy Oglivie, a public health nurse.

-- Cheyenne: Tamara Mason, a Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) Program graduate, Dr. Patsy Hesen Haslam Leadership Award. DNP faculty member Ann Marie Haslam Hart created the award in memory of her mother, Patsy Hesen Haslam. Haslam was a nursing and public health advocate in southern West Virginia. Her community leadership inspired educational and public health initiatives across Appalachia. The award recognizes a graduating DNP student who displayed both leadership and grace in the DNP Program.

-- Cheyenne: Joleen Watson, an online RN-BSN (registered nurse-BSN) Completion graduate, Professional Nurse Award. The award is for excellence in practice and in community and professional service. The award is given to a RN-BSN program graduate, where registered nurses can earn a baccalaureate degree in nursing. A former faculty member sponsors the award.

-- Colorado Springs, Colo.: Lauren Mochowski, an on-campus basic BSN graduate, Amelia Leino Memorial Award. The award recognizes an on-campus basic BSN graduate for demonstrating academic excellence and a strong aptitude for family nursing. Leino was appointed the first dean of the nursing program when it was established in 1951. She provided the leadership necessary to establish a Bachelor of Science degree program at the university. The funds for the award are provided from School of Nursing friends and alumni.

-- Denver, Colo.: Laura VanBrocklin, a DNP Program graduate, Change Agent Award. The award recognizes a graduating DNP student who has demonstrated a commitment to improving and changing health.

-- Douglas: Sarah Boyer, an on-campus basic BSN graduate, Rudolph “Rudy” and Louise Anselmi and Jeri Kirk Family Trust Nursing Scholarship. The scholarship, for demonstrating leadership and responsibility, was established by Anselmi who was instrumental in sponsoring legislation that authorized establishment of the School of Nursing in 1951. The leadership award is one of the many ways he supported the school and is presented in memory of his wife, Louise.

-- Fruita, Colo.: Jeremy Franklin, an on-campus basic BSN graduate, Lina Kennedy White Memorial Award. The award is given for interest in and aptitude for gerontology. The award honors White, who was active in nursing in the Laramie community for many years. Following her death in 1980, her daughters established a memorial fund.

-- Gillette: Nichole Taylor, a DNP Program graduate, Susan McCabe Psychiatric Mental Health Graduate Award. The award recognizes a graduate in the Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner Program for demonstrating academic excellence, passion for knowledge and superior clinical practice. The School of Nursing faculty and staff established the award to remember McCabe for her passion in psychiatric mental health nursing. McCabe died in a car accident in 2008.

-- Gillette: Hayley Wasserburger, an accelerated BSN graduate in the BRAND Program, received the Rudolph “Rudy” and Louise Anselmi and Jeri Kirk Family Trust Nursing Scholarship.

-- Highlands Ranch, Colo.: Sara Pepper, an on-campus basic BSN graduate, Beverly McDermott Award. The award is presented to a student demonstrating leadership and political activism. McDermott was a member of the UW nursing faculty for 25 years, was counselor for the Student Nurses Association and was active in the American Nurses Association.

-- Murietta, Calif.: Ryan Russi, an on-campus basic BSN graduate, School of Nursing Spirit Award. The award is given to a basic BSN graduate for demonstrating exceptional spirit and enthusiasm. The award is funded by faculty and staff to show appreciation for a student who “cheered everyone up, who was a pleasure to have in class, who is a pleasure to be around and who makes us proud to be known as a graduate of our program.”

-- Pinedale: Nicole McConnell, an on-campus BSN graduate, received the Dorothy Tupper Senior Award.

-- Sheridan: Morgan Jacobs, an on-campus basic BSN graduate, Gertrude Gould Memorial Award. The award is for excellence in public health nursing. Gould was a member of the planning committee to establish a nursing program at UW. The award in her name was established by funds donated by the Laramie Medical Group.

-- Spearfish, S.D.: Rebecca Thiel, a basic BSN graduate, Carol Macnee Scholarship Award. The award is for demonstrating excellence in scholarship and/or research. The School of Nursing faculty and staff established the award to remember Macnee for her commitment to research and scholarship. Macnee died in a car accident in 2008.

-- Torrington: Monica Teichert, a DNP Program graduate, Alpha Pi Chapter of Sigma Theta Tau Award for Exemplary Rural Practice in Nursing. The award recognizes a graduate student who exemplifies advanced nursing practice in a rural context through research and/or clinical practice.

-- Wellington, Colo.: Nichole Valloric, an accelerated BSN in the BRAND Program, Passion for Nursing Award. The award is granted to an accelerated BSN BRAND Program graduate for demonstrating passion in nursing. A former faculty member sponsors the award.

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