Colorado Christian University announced this month that Allyson Campbell, a recent graduate of its Nursing program, has been selected as the first-ever recipient of Colorado's Nightingale Nursing Student Award for Excellence in Human Caring. The award was a mark of distinction for both Campbell and CCU.
Campbell was nominated last December while still a student in CCU's Nursing program. She has since graduated, passed the National Council Licensure Exam to become a registered nurse, and plans to enroll next in the University's Registered Nurse to Bachelor of Science in Nursing program (RN to BSN), established in 2009.
The annual Nightingale Awards, traditionally reserved for Colorado registered nurses, were founded in 1985 to recognize individuals who exemplify the professional philosophies and practices of 19th-century wartime heroine Florence Nightingale.
This year, the Western Slope Nightingale Committee added the Nightingale Nursing Student Award to recognize similar excellence among nursing students. Currently, the student award is available only to nursing students in Colorado's Western Slope region. As with its parent award, nominees were submitted by peers and faculty.
In March a banquet was held in Grand Junction to announce the winner of the first Nightingale Nursing Student Award. Dr. Jean Watson, founder of the Nightingale Awards, presided in officially naming Campbell from among two other finalists from Mesa State College.
"More than once [Allyson] notably acted above what would have been expected for her training, using her experience and medical knowledge to head off what would have been acute health situations," wrote a colleague of Campbell's in a letter of support for her nomination. "Without a doubt, her interventions prevented hospitalizations on numerous occasions."
CCU established its RN to BSN program to help meet a growing need for nursing professionals throughout Colorado and the nation; recent estimates have projected Colorado as fifth-highest among states with nursing shortages in health care facilities of all types between 2002 and 2012.
The Nursing program provides licensed practical nurses with an associate degree in nursing, and the ability to sit for the RN licensure exam. The RN to BSN
is a globally available, Web-based program that provides registered nurses with a bachelor's degree in nursing. Offering a standard core curriculum, both programs are unique in their emphases on combining faith with physical care -- educating students to respond to the human totality of body, mind, and spirit in caring for patients during some of life's most vulnerable moments.