On April 24, 2017, three Connell School of Nursing students were honored for their outstanding achievements by receiving Ever to Excel Awards. Each year the Office of Student Involvement presents awards to exceptional members of the Boston College community. Students are recognized for their contributions to co-curricular life, leadership roles, or creative involvement on campus. CSON students Helen Au, ’18, Stephanie Makowski ’17, and Joselyn Giron Noriega ’18 were nominated by students and faculty in recognition of their excellence.

Helen Au—nominated by Joselyn Giron Noriega ’18, Catherine Read, Carina Katigbak, and Cheuk-Lam Lo ’20—received the Paul Chebator and Mer Zovko Award. The award is presented to a junior who has been instrumental in creating community in his/her environment, embracing the changes inherent to the junior year experience. Au credits her ability to overcome these challenges and figure out her values to her involvement in the Keys to Inclusive Leadership in Nursing (KILN) program at Boston College.

“The support and guidance I received from my KILN mentors allowed me to push past the barriers I am facing, and reaffirmed the reasons why I want to be in nursing,” said Au. “Receiving the Paul Chebator and Mer Zovko Award has further provided me with a reassurance of my abilities and strength to continue my education and career path in the nursing field.”

Stephanie Makowski—nominated by Jaqueline Sly—was awarded the Jeffrey S. Keith Award, an honor presented to a student who faced a significant challenge in his/her life while continuing to excel in academic and co-curricular activities. Makowski’s father passed away from Glioblastoma Multiforme at the end of her junior year and she was able to find strength and support from the BC community through her involvement in Kairos and the HOPE group run. 

“It was a big surprise and a great honor to win this award. I was truly touched when I found I had been nominated,” said Makowski. “I hope to take my experience with loss to help better empathize and support patients through the stressful times in the hospital.” 

Joselyn Giron Noriega—nominated by Joyce Murphy and Ryan Heffernan—was presented with the St. Alphonsus Rodriguez Award. This award is given to a student employee who went above and beyond, modeling student leadership by developing relationships, empowering others, and creating an atmosphere of care and concern. Giron Noriega was honored to be recognized for her work in Campus Ministry, especially as she believes the award defines who she is as a person and who she hopes to be as a future nurse.

“My parents raised me to be this caring, helpful and attentive person which is why I decided to pursue a career in nursing,” reflected Noriega. “As a nurse I hope to make my patients feel well cared for, to make them feel protected and loved.”

Congratulations to these three outstanding CSON students on their awards. The nursing community will surely benefit from their talent, commitment, and strength. 

—Lillie Karch, Connell School of Nursing