Kathleen Doherty: Highest Honors Scholarship Recipient
My name is Kathleen Doherty. I hold a Bachelor of Science degree in both Nursing and Sociology. I am currently a Registered Nurse with a background in Pediatric Intensive Care Nursing and Ambulatory Surgery Nursing. I am currently a full-time student at Penn State University to obtain my Master of Science in Nursing to focusing on the Family Nurse Practitioner pathway. I am also currently pregnant with a baby girl who will be born in February 2021. When I saw the opportunity to apply for this scholarship, I thought of how far I have come, especially as a pregnant nurse and full-time student during a pandemic. This scholarship will help to decrease the financial stressors between school and becoming a mother for the first time, which will help allow me to focus completely on my future goals as a future Nurse Practitioner. This year has solidified my endurance in overcoming the obstacles life presents and pushing to be the best I can be not only for myself and my family but also for every patient in my care.
Will your school have on campus classes or completely online next Fall? What are your thoughts about that?
Penn State University is having both virtual and in-person classes until November 20, 2020. I believe that as long as proper precautions are taken, and students adhere to social distancing that in-person classes can be successful and help students thrive in obtaining their education.
How do you think technology will shape our future going forward from a personal and or macro perspective?
Technology is and will continue to play an integral role for society as a whole. It has allowed many people to continue our education, further our careers and opportunities, and maintain our employment status.
Do you think your major (if applicable) is well positioned for the future? If not, are you considering changing?
I believe majoring in any health care field will allow you to have a wide array of job opportunities. We will always need people who are passionate about bettering the health of others.
Whether it is through helping mentor and tutor undergraduate nursing students or through volunteering locally at food drives or shelters, playing a part in communities or for individuals that really do need additive compassion and empathy makes you feel many different emotions. On one hand, you feel like you are really making a difference in the world and impacting the happiness of others; on the other hand it really makes you reflect internally to understand and remember what is truly important in life.
In the current global climate, what are your thoughts regarding online organizations and the importance of remaining connected while socially distant?
Online organizations are fantastic to help connect together people on a global level who otherwise might never have contact with each other. These organizations allow us to share our thoughts, innovations, concerns, hopes, and goals to help us band together and understand each other in a new light.
Now more than ever, humanitarian causes are aiding suffering people around the world. What causes are important to you, and how do you plan to incorporate them going forward?
A few causes that are very important to me and that I would love to have a strong impact with include Doctors Without Borders, Habitat for Humanity, and Make-A-Wish foundation. Having been a nurse in a Pediatric Intensive Care Unit, I have taken care of countless sick and dying children who really are the strongest people I have seen thus far and deserve to have their goals and wishes come true. Habitat for Humanity and Doctors Without Borders are especially important to me as a future Nurse Practitioner. I believe I will be able make a greater impact as a health care provider in underserved populations and countries that are severely deficient in proper health care.