Becker College Nursing Students Awarded Fairlawn Scholarships

Published on Monday, June 14th, 2010

Three student nurses were selected to receive scholarships from the Fairlawn Foundation in recognition of academic achievement and community service, Becker College announced today. Seniors Stacey Burgess and Marianne Sarkisian and sophomore Angela Rushford were each selected to receive $2,500.

The Fairlawn Foundation increased its scholarship grant to Becker College, from $10,000 in 2008, to $15,000. “We are very grateful that the Fairlawn Foundation has increased their support for Becker’s nursing students,” said Dean Hickey, vice president of development. “In doing so, they have enabled three very capable young people to continue their education.  We’re excited to know that soon they will graduate and contribute to improving healthcare for the people of Central Massachusetts.”

Stacey Burgess of Leominster, Mass.
Burgess is on a path to becoming a life flight nurse. She holds a bachelor’s degree in communication and pre-medicine from University of Massachusetts – Amherst and is currently employed by Cataldo Ambulance as an emergency medical technician. Upon earning certification as a registered nurse, she plans to transition from the ambulance to the emergency room.

“This scholarship is an honor, and it will help support me in my final semester,” said Burgess. “The combination of nursing skills, medical knowledge and communication techniques will help me give the best care possible to my patients.”

Marianne Sarkisian of Sutton, Mass.
“I have a passion for making a difference in the lives of children and their families,” said Sarkisian, who plans to become a pediatric nurse. “I have helped our chapter of the National Student Nurses Association raise funds for worthy causes. I am glad the Fairlawn Foundation provides funds to help student nurses.”

Active in her community, Sarkisian has volunteered with Girls, Inc., Our Lady of Mt. Carmel Church and the Auburn Chamber of Commerce, and she raised funds for the treatment of a local cancer patient. She is currently employed by Harmon Home Health, Inc.

Angela Rushford of Spencer, Mass.
“We not only take care of patients from a holistic approach, we are also responsible for promoting health and giving back to the community,” said Rushford.“I want to go on to earn my bachelor’s degree. The Fairlawn scholarship will help me further my education.”
In addition to her studies, Rushford has participated in Student Nurses Association (NSNA) blood pressure screenings and blood drives and was voted NSNA secretary and student body representative for her class. A certified nursing assistant, she took a leave of absence from the Saint Vincent Hospital Intensive Care Unit (ICU) to attend college, and she plans to return to the ICU as a psychiatric substance abuse nurse.
About the Fairlawn Scholarships and the Fairlawn Foundation
The Fairlawn scholarships recognize students who not only meet specific academic criteria but who show dedication by participating in community outreach and service, peer-to-peer tutoring, promotion of nursing as a career and career development initiatives.

Fairlawn Foundation is one of the earliest health conversion foundations in Massachusetts. Dedicated to improving health and health care in the Worcester area, in its first 15 years, it has awarded over $4 million in grants to support capital needs, clinical services, and professional education.

PHOTO: Marianne Sarkisian, Stacey Burgess, Angela Rushford and Becker College Director of Nursing Programs Linda Esper (l-r)