The Department of Nursing at Maimonides Medical Center in Brooklyn celebrated the nursing students in its Nurse Extern Program Aug. 2 with a Recognition and Appreciation Day. The event served as the culmination of an eight-week program in which the students work with and are mentored by nurse managers on various units.
Maimonides Senior Vice President and CNO Tom Smith, RN, DNP, NEA-BC, welcomed the students and their mentors to the graduation ceremony.
This years externs are an extraordinarily talented, outstanding, committed group of nursing students who are dedicated to learning, he said. Smith also praised RNs who gave their time to mentor the students, who came from the University of Pennsylvania, Boston College and NYU, among others.
Diane Mancino, RN, EdD, CAE, FAAN, executive director of the National Student Nurses Association, served as the events guest speaker.
Mancinos remarks included a quote from former American Journal of Nursing president and publisher Thelma Schorr, RN, BSN, FAAN: I would have become a nurse without my mentor, but never would I have sought the level of professionalism, the degree of compassion, the depth of humor and the height of empathy that were set as guideposts for me by the conduct of my mentor.
Maimonides student nurse extern program is a learning experience for junior BSN students enrolled in accredited nursing programs.
Applicants come from all over the country, according to Sharon Markowitz, RN-C, MSN, assistant director of nursing recruitment and retention, who manages the program.
One applicant actually flew in from Michigan for an interview, she said.
The 12 externs come from diverse backgrounds and were chosen from more than 160 applicants.
According to Mary Ann Radioli, RN, BSN, MA, director of nurse recruitment and retention, the 2013 program began with a welcome ceremony and luncheon at which students and mentors met for the first time. In addition to working on their selected units, students attended an educational day that provided speakers in wound care, rapid response, pharmacy, QI, neurology, stroke and cardiology.
Extern Stephanie Almanzar, a student from Rutgers University, Newark, N.J., said she gained a great deal of cardiac experience during her time on the cardiothoracic ICU.
The first day was overwhelming but in no time I was taking care of patients, doing vitals, she said. I actually got to see a surgery.
Upon graduation, externs received a certificate and a commemorative keychain. As a special gift this year, they also received an edition of 50 Years of the National Student Nurses Association and a DVD on mentoring, both donated by Mancino.
Tracey Boyd is a regional reporter.