Marian Nowak, DNP, MPH, MEd, RN, assistant professor of community health nursing at Rutgers University-Camden (N.J.), was honored Nov. 5 for winning the 2014 Nurse.com National GEM Award in the category of Volunteerism and Service.
During a congratulatory reception on the Rutgers-Camden campus, Donna Novak, DNP, RN, CRNP, director and nurse executive for Nurse.com, presented Nowak with the engraved crystal GEM Award, citing the winners 37 years of nursing practice and service to disadvantaged populations. Nowak was acknowledged for developing the first student nurse public health emergency preparedness certificate program, for her innovative approach to simplify disaster triage, and for the many programs she developed as an expert in school health services.
Nowak said she was honored and humbled to have been chosen for the national honor. It seemed unreal, she said. I never thought what I accomplished was worthy of national recognition.
Nowak received a framed Nurse.com cover featuring her as the winner in the Volunteerism and Service category. Rutgers-Camden School of Nursing Dean Joanne Robinson, PhD, RN, GCNS-BC, FAAN, was presented with a plaque recognizing the university as home to a Nurse.com National GEM Award winner.
After accepting the national award, Nowak thanked her family and colleagues, singling out her first head nurse Theresa Carlin, RN, a colleague and mentor for almost 40 years, who attended the event.
Nowak praised the Rutgers community of faculty and administration who work each day to develop future nurses that are not only competent, but who reach out to others, and commended her students for completing extra clinical hours in community nursing to serve our most vulnerable neighbors. Nowak concluded with her hope that highlighting some of my work will help encourage more volunteerism.
It gives our university recognition and hopefully highlights the importance of using your nursing talents in many situations, she said. Service activities have had a profound impact on my life as a nurse. Ive come to realize just how precious every individual is, and how nurses can assist in so many ways.
Coordinated by Robinson and Associate Dean Marie OToole, EdD, RN, FAAN, and co-sponsored by Nurse.com, the award reception was held as part of Rutgers-Camdens annual Distinguished Nursing Lecture event. Robert Hess, PhD, RN, FAAN, executive vice president of education content and credentialing for ContinuingEducation.com, spoke at the event about shared governance and its impact on nursing and healthcare systems.
Donna Novak is director and nurse executive for Nurse.com.