December 9, 2015 — We, the nursing faculty and staff, are very proud to have a Registered Professional Nursing program contained within Fulton and Montgomery counties. The program graduates nurses who immediately take jobs at local hospitals, nursing homes, and community agencies. Some of the graduates also obtained jobs at Albany Medical Center, Bassett Health Care, and the Veterans Administration. A small percentage of our graduates leave the area and obtain employment in other states. The program’s graduates consistently have licensure exam pass rates above the state and national averages.
The nursing program at FM is a very competitive and demanding program. One of its components is the clinical experience, which occurs off campus every week of the semester. You may have seen some of the nursing students at local nursing homes, hospitals, and home care agencies. You will recognize them as they wear an all-white uniform along with their FM student name badge. The students care for the whole person, it goes beyond just performing specific tasks. They are part of an interdisciplinary team which focuses on your family member’s care. The students perform an array of procedures, pass medications, and document their individual assessment on their clients. Many clinical lab days are very challenging and stressful. In addition, the majority of the nursing students juggle work, school, and family obligations.
The family and friends of a nursing student may actively share in the stress of the nursing program. They volunteer to be a study partner but, suddenly realize that they are faced with terminology they have never heard before and certainly cannot pronounce. Many families can tell you stories of how their student nurse was at a soccer game with a stack of books studying for a test. They are once again juggling school and family time. These families can also tell you how they held their nursing student while they cried uncontrollably after losing their first patient. Nursing is hard, but nursing is also very rewarding. It requires a dedicated person.
A few years ago, we celebrated our 40th graduating class from Fulton-Montgomery Community College’s Nursing program. It was a spectacular evening with graduates from across the State and country returning to the campus to celebrate. We celebrated the 40th graduating class, reminisced about former class experiences, and showed off our high-tech simulation lab. The goals for the event were to get as many of our nursing alumni back on campus and to support the development of a new nursing scholarship. Through the generosity of the nursing alumni that evening and from many outside organizations, the Nurses for Nurses Scholarship was established. Currently, this scholarship annually grants a second year student a scholarship of $500. We would like to see this scholarship grow to fund several student scholarships or to pay the cost for an entire year of the Nursing program.
In 2016, we will have our 47th nursing class and we would also like to again celebrate the accomplishments of past and present graduates. As such, the FM Foundation would like to host another nursing alumni program. If you are interested in participating, please email the FM Foundation at email@example.com with your name, phone number, and year that you graduated from the program.
Sherry Warner is an Assistant Professor of Nursing at FM.