Fay W. Whitney School of Nursing

UWYO Nursing Students receive Convocation Awards: 2018

Pictured top row, left-right:
Sarah Boyer, Jeremy Franklin, Nicole McConnell, Sarah Pepper, Morgan Jacobs,
Lauren Mochowski, Hayley Wasserburger, and Joleen Watson.

Pictured bottom row, left-right:
Monica Teichert, Tamara Mason, Rebecca Thiel, Nichole Taylor, Ryan Russi,
Laura VanBrocklin, Sonia Klein, and Nichole Valloric.


University of Wyoming Nursing Students Recognized at Convocation 2018 Ceremony

Congratulations to the 16 students pictured above, who were honored at the 2018 Nursing Convocation Ceremony in the Arts & Sciences Auditorium on Friday, May 11. All of the nursing programs provided at the University of Wyoming Fay W. Whitney School of Nursing were represented by one or more of the graduates receiving the awards. From the Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) ProgramTamara Mason, Nichole Taylor, Monica Teichert and Laura VanBrocklin; from RN-BSN Completion, Joleen Watson; from BRAND accelerated BSN, Sonia Klein, Nichole Valloric and Hayley Wasserburger; from the on-campus Basic BSN: Sarah Boyer, Jeremy Franklin, Morgan Jacobs, Nicole McConnell, Lauren Mochowski, Sarah Pepper, Ryan Russi and Rebecca Thiel. Please scroll down for descriptions of each individual's award...

Picture of Monica Teichert, winner of the 2018 Alpha Pi Chapter of Sigma Theta Tau Award

Alpha Pi Chapter, Sigma Theta Tau Award for Exemplary Rural Practice in Nursing, recognizing a graduate student who exemplifies advanced nursing practice in a rural context through research and/or clinical practice: MONICA TEICHERT

Monica Teichert (Torrington WY) embodies nursing excellence in scholarship/leadership. For 10+ yrs she worked in multiple nursing capacities: telemetry/ICU/ER/Surgery. She coordinated a nurse residency program, provided preceptor development courses, excelled in academic endeavors, clinical rotations. Preceptors noted her eagerness to learn, preparation, relational skills & standard for exactness. She welcomes critical feedback, engages in collegial discussions, represented UW in Wash. DC as Jonas Nurse Leader Scholar. Dedication to EBP/clinical excellence will serve her well as an FNP.

Laura VanBrocklin: Change Agent Award

Change Agent Award recognizing graduating DNP student demonstrating commitment to improving and changing health: LAURA VANBROCKLIN

Laura VanBrocklin (Denver CO) is dedicated to health behavior change (HBC). Her class participation in the HBC courses reflected her passion for encouraging healthy lifestyles. Her course work is reflective, she is eager to learn new skills and willing to challenge the discussion related to HBC in primary care. Dedication to HBC is particularly apparent in her DNP project, where she worked with a cardiac rehabilitation team to implement a quality improvement project designed to motivate clients to attend cardiac rehabilitation once discharged.

Tamara Mason: Dr. Patsy Hesen Haslam Leadership Award

Dr. Patsy Hesen Haslam Leadership Award recognizing graduating DNP student displaying both leadership and grace in DNP program: TAMARA MASON

Tamara Mason (Cheyenne WY) demonstrated academic excellence and professionalism throughout DNP program, but her role as a student leader set her apart. She volunteered, advocated for her fellow students and the DNP program. She encouraged active involvement, professional problem solving among all DNP cohorts. She mentored new DNP students, helping recruit new students into the program. Like Dr. Haslam, the DNP faculty have no doubt that Mason will continue to demonstrate this same graceful leadership in her new role as a Family Nurse Practitioner.

Nichole Taylor: Susan McCabe Psychiatric Mental Health Graduate Award

Susan McCabe Psychiatric Mental Health Graduate Award: recognizinig a graduate in the PMHNP program for demonstrating academic excellence, passion for knowledge and superior clinical practice: NICHOLE TAYLOR

Nichole Taylor (Gillette WY) is a gifted leader, mentor; a self-driven learner who went above and beyond to maximize learning. Her work has been detailed and thoughtful. Outside the classroom, she developed into a skilled clinician, yet remained humble/relatable to clients. Preceptors remark on her natural skill and ease w/which she interacted with clients. She is nonjudgmental in her care for others. She has a passion for caring for clients living in rural Wyoming. Nursing faculty look forward to observing the impact this graduate will have in her community.

Rebecca Thiel: Carol Macnee Scholarship Award

Carol Macnee Scholarship Award for demonstrating excellence in scholarship and/or research: REBECCA THIEL

Rebecca Thiel (Spearfish SD) was inspired in Evidence Based Practice to improve practice, pursue quality, engage in research. She worked with Dr. Sarah Kooienga designing survey tools, conducting quantitative/qualitative analysis. While attending WWAMI Practice-based Research Network meeting in Seattle she provided input to U. Washington-based researchers in potential research questions/research design; networked w/med students/physicians on research strategies in primary care. Long-term plans: PhD & involvement in team-based research to improve clinical practice and health care system.

Jolene Watson: Professional Nurse Award

Professional Nurse Award for excellence in practice, in community and professional service, awarded to grad of RN-BSN Completion: JOLEEN WATSON

Joleen Watson (Cheyenne WY) RN for 11 years, working in urgent care/primary care/interventional radiology/post-anesthesia care unit. A dedicated endoscopy nurse, she loves caring for Vets. In 2016 began BSN education, realizing higher ed was necessary for expanding career. Her academic work is excellent; she conducts herself professionally in online learning environment, very engaged/supportive of others. Capstone Project: Hepatitis C prevention, screening, access to treatment. Developed action plan/5-yr goal: identify Laramie Co. gaps in care/increase public education/extend services.

Nichole Valloric: Passion for Nursing Award

Passion for Nursing Award to graduate of BRAND accelerated BSN Program, for demonstrating passion in nursing: NICHOLE VALLORIC

Nichole Valloric (Wellington CO) demonstrated determination in the face of adversity, a positive attitude, and a professional demeanor with her peers, staff, and community partners. Not only does she have a passion for nursing, she is a delightful student who provides competent, compassionate, and respectful care. She will be a tremendous asset to our profession as she pursues her nursing career and we look forward to having her as a colleague.

Sarah Boyer: Rudolph "Rudy" and Louise Anselmi and Jeri Kirk Family Trust Nursing Scholarship

Rudolph "Rudy" and Louise Anselmi and Jeri Kirk Family Trust Nursing Scholarship, for demonstrating leadership and responsibility: SARAH BOYER

Sarah Boyer (Douglas WY), Basic BSN student and president of SNA. As a very active, involved, hands-on leader, she worked to create an inclusive environment for all students in the nursing major. Under her tenure, SNA became very active with fundraisers/social events: trips to Denver’s Ronald McDonald House to support families; a bone marrow donor drive; activities for residents of Laramie Care Center & Spring Wind Assisted Living. She is a great role model for students, demonstrating integrity in the classroom, clinical settings and through her SNA leadership role.

Hayley Wasserburger: Rudolph "Rudy" & Louise Anselmi & Jeri Kirk Family Trust Nursing Scholarship

Rudolph "Rudy" and Louise Anselmi and Jeri Kirk Family Trust Nursing Scholarship, for demonstrating leadership and responsibility: HAYLEY WASSERBURGER

Hayley Wasserburger (Gillette WY) BRAND student & cohort student rep, is an exceptional role model, demonstrating an eager, proactive professional standard in classroom/clinical settings. An excellent communicator & time manager, she strives to stay 1 step ahead when anticipating/providing patient care. Doctors/nurses admire her boldness, willingness to ask questions, challenging plans of care that seem not to best benefit patients. Physicians appreciate her insight, altering patient interventions to include her suggestions. She will be an incredible leader/advocate for students/patients.

Morgan Jacobs: Gertrude Gould Memorial Award

Gertrude Gould Memorial Award, for excellence in public health nursing: MORGAN JACOBS

Morgan Jacobs (Sheridan WY) [Recipient info] has a love of nursing and has done excellent work in the area of public health. This graduate did her community rotation at Albany County Public Health in Laramie. The nurses were very impressed with her hard work and willingness to jump into activities. Showing a lot of self-direction and initiative, she was able to become independent in many nursing activities of the public health agency. She excelled in mom/baby home visits, flu shot clinics, childhood immunizations, and TB tests. The nurses plan to use a handout she created for international travel. She was self-motivated in doing a lot of community outreach and supporting the mission of the agency.

Lauren Mochowski: Amelia Leino Memorial Award

Amelia Leino Memorial Award recognizes on campus, Basic BSN grad for demonstrating academic excellence and strong aptitude for family nursing: LAUREN MOCHOWSKI

Lauren Mochowski (Colorado Springs CO) is among several graduates in Basic BSN with a 4.0 grade point average. Her enthusiasm for learning and for the profession of nursing is evident. By demonstrating caring and high level clinical skills, she excelled in her obstetrics rotation. She is compassionate to everyone around her including patients, families, staff, faculty, and peers. Her patients comment on the excellent care she provides. Her positive attitude is contagious One cannot help but smile when around her! She is very family-focused, working well with families in diverse settings.

Sara Pepper: Beverly McDermott Award

Beverly McDermott Award for demonstrating leadership and political activism: SARA PEPPER

Sara Pepper (Highlands Ranch CO) is an effective leader, demonstrating motivation/ability to accomplish goals. Taking an active role in Aspire, she assembled a capstone clinical sites/living options database to serve future classes of nursing students. She was instrumental in planning/organizing the 1st annual Nightingala, a hugely successful event giving seniors opportunity to celebrate completion of on-campus classes while heading off to capstone. Self-directed & innovative, she is helping the next generation to continue the activities. She is also an active leader in her sorority.

Nicole McConnell: Dorothy Tupper Senior Award

Dorothy Tupper Senior Award, for demonstrating caring, compassion and interpersonal communication skills: NICOLE MCCONNELL

Nicole McConnell (Pinedale WY)-Basic BSN-consistently modeled strong interpersonal communication, compassion and caring in the clinical setting. She received multiple compliments from patients/families/staff in her communication of patient status as well as in discharge teaching. Her excellence in compassion and caring was most evident in the initiative she took to assist her assigned nurse with hospice care one morning. As care continued into the post-mortem period, she expanded her care/compassion to patient’s family members, especially supporting them during the veteran’s final salute.

Sonia Klein: Dorothy Tupper Senior Award

Dorothy Tupper Senior Award for demonstrating caring, compassion and interpersonal communication skills: SONIA KLEIN

Sonia Klein (Baggs WY) is a compassionate, caring, knowledgeable, & professional nursing student. She is always prepared for class/clinical & has a positive demeanor with peers, staff, faculty, & community partners. She is pleasant to work with, and treats everyone with utmost respect. She truly listens to patients, providing safe, competent care. Her Med/Surg instructor says, “She has a terrific bedside approach & manner with patients… has a gift for creating a trusting rapport with every patient she encounters…Patients have even voiced disappointment when she could not be their nurse.”

Jeremy Franklin: Lina Kennedy White Memorial Award

Lina Kennedy White Memorial Award for interest in and aptitude for gerontology: JEREMY FRANKLIN

Jeremy Franklin (Fruita CO) has shown a true passion for gerontological nursing, consistently demonstrating professional advocacy for older adults in his clinical courses. He has shown resourcefulness in actively understanding/seeking solutions for older adults with multiple health problems/challenges in optimizing their health outcomes. Working as a CNA and restorative aide enhanced his interest/love for the geriatric population. It is delightful to observe his enthusiasm for the older population. He always has a smile, exuding a positive attitude with his patients, peers, and staff.

Ryan Russi: School of Nursing Spirit Award

School of Nursing Spirit Award recognizing on campus Basic BSN graduate for demonstrating exceptional spirit and enthusiasm: RYAN RUSSI

Ryan Russi (Murrieta CA) exemplifies the essence of the Spirit Award, always with a positive attitude & smile on his face! Friendly/uplifting to peers/faculty, his presence creates a positive force in the classroom. Being a student athlete and nursing student was a challenge well met by Russi. He even recruited athletes by giving them school tours. Always first to volunteer to represent nursing, he spoke enthusiastically for the school at Discovery Days, exuding passion for the nursing profession. His patients comment about his excellent care, forecasting a future as a wonderful nurse.

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