Students and alumni of the Palm Beach Atlantic University School of Nursing are finalists for the 2011 Palm Beach County Heroes in Medicine Awards in the Student Hero category.
|Six PBA nursing students volunteered in Haiti following the 2010 earthquake. Serving on the team were (back row, from left) Kim Sansone, Fernanda Serrano, Michelle Flammia, (front row, from left) Stephanie Carter, Johanne Alexandre and Thuy Nguyen.|
Presented by the Palm Beach County Medical Society, the Student Hero Award recognizes a high school or college student or a group of high school or college students who have made outstanding commitments to healthcare of the community, locally, nationally and/or globally and as a result have made or are making a significant difference through their activities.
The PBA students all served on a mission trip to Haiti during the spring of 2010. Johanne Alexandre, Stephanie Poston Carter, Michelle Flammia, Thuy Nguyen, Kim Sansone and Fernanda Serrano spent their spring break among those in need after the devastating earthquake that struck the island nation.
Sansone and Serrano are 2010 PBA graduates, and the other students are seniors who will graduate in May.
In addition to caring for the wounded, teaching about proper hygiene and distributing water and food, the students prayed and read Bible stories to the children while cleaning their wounds and provided emotional support.
"Every minute was uncertain, and we had to rely on our faith to gain strength to persevere," Carter said.
Members of the nursing team said they returned stronger in their faith, critical thinking skills and compassion for the profession of nursing. Some students said they plan to return to Haiti to continue serving as health care providers.
"God used this experience as an opportunity to give more than goods, money and time, but to impact the heath care team of Haiti," Alexandre said.
The eighth annual awards luncheon will be held on May 11 in the Kravis Center’s Cohen Pavilion. Proceeds from Heroes in Medicine will benefit Project Access, a community-based program to increase access to healthcare for the uninsured, as well as the medical society’s scholarship fund.
In addition to the Student Hero Award, awards in five other categories will be presented: Community Outreach Hero; Bruce Rendina Professional Hero; Physician Hero (Local/National); Physician Hero (International); and Healthcare Provider Hero (Non-Physician).