The BYU College of Nursing has had a great year, celebrating their 60th anniversary as a college and now celebrating National Nurses Week.
National Nurses Week is celebrated from May 6, known as National Nurses Day, through May 12, the birthday of Florence Nightingale the founder of modern nursing.
On May 9, to celebrate student nurses, nursing students will provide free blood pressure checks for the campus community in the WSC Terrace from noon to 2 p.m.
Barbara Mandleco, a BYU faculty member in the College of Nursing, sits in her office surrounded by photographs of her family and children’s drawings hung on the wall.
Mandleco was interested in nursing at a young age, and began as a volunteer in high school at a local hospital before eventually receiving her master’s degree in pediatric nursing. Following this degree, she completed her residency and segued into teaching at the University of Utah and BYU.
Mandleco taught pediatrics for several years before returning to BYU for her doctorate in family science and now teaches graduate classes related to family issues in the College of Nursing.
In light of National Nurses Week, Mandleco said as nurses their roles have expanded as to how much they can do.
“One of the purposes of National Nurses Week is to celebrate what nursing is all about and to remind people what it is that we do, and that we have an important role in health care,” Mandleco said.
Mandleco said nursing and teaching provide similar rewards for her.
“I love patient care,” Mandleco said. “I love the care that you can deliver to patients and their families. I can make a difference in somebody’s life.”
This reward transfers over to teaching for Mandleco.
“I can also make a difference in student’s lives,” Mandleco said. “So I also get rewards from working with students, especially students who are engaged and interested.”
Mandleco said advice she would give to nursing students would be to enjoy what you are learning.
“Get joy out of what you can do for other people and realize that you are making a difference,” Mandleco said.
Maggie Strike, a student nurse at BYU just started the program, but said she has loved what she has learned so far and is excited to start working with patients.
Strike participated in the blood pressure checks last semester.
“It was fun to learn a skill and be able to use it to help people and help them be more informed about their health,” Strike said. “I have already had hands on experiences in the program and I haven’t even started clinicals yet.”
Emily Ure, another nursing student, said she is excited to learn more and is so grateful to have this opportunity. She loves going to the doctor’s office and interacting with the nurses and knows she will be doing that one day.
“It’s a blessing to know that I will be doing something I love for the rest of my life,” Ure said. “It’s just the greatest thing to finally be accomplishing one of the biggest goals I have ever had.”
In conjunction with the College of Nursing, the Education in Zion Gallery recently revealed “The Healer’s Art: A Celebration of the College of Nursing.” It is located on the second floor of the gallery in the Joseph F. Smith Building.