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Student Life

Nick grew up in a family of medical professionals—his mother and grandmother are both nurses and his father is a paramedic. “I’ve always been surrounded with medical jargon and stories of health incidents, crises, and the rewarding benefits of providing care,” he said.

As his senior year of high school came and college neared, Nick decided to study biology with the hope of attending medical school. “However, I knew I wanted to be in the field as soon as possible and realized all of the opportunities in the nursing profession. Late into high school I changed my intended major and applied to Emmanuel's nursing program, and it was one of the best decisions I have ever made.”

He decided on Emmanuel College because of its small size and proximity to some of the country’s top healthcare institutions—such as neighboring Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, Boston Children’s Hospital, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute and more. “I wanted to escape small town living, however, I was not willing to give up the educational experience I had in high school with small class sizes and individual attention from educators,” he said.

When it comes to “firsts,” Nick’s Emmanuel experience has been full of them. He is a member of the first cohort of the College’s traditional undergraduate nursing program, which has created a special connection with his classmates. “Being a member of the inaugural cohort provided many opportunities for learning and growth,” he said. “Without any cohorts above to give us advice, my classmates and I have built a close-knit connection built on collaboration, communication, and a mutual appreciation for the experience that we are sharing.” 

As a student-nurse, Nick has focused on deepening his understanding of the human experience. “I will have patients of many different backgrounds, and I want to be able to provide inclusive care to all patients, and be educated on different cultures, religions, races, ethnicities, and identities.”

During his medical/surgical clinical at Boston Medical Center, the city’s only public hospital, Nick worked with patients experiencing homelessness and learned about the social disparities affecting access to health care. The following semester, he delved into the mental health side of patient care at St. Elizabeth’s Medical Center in Brighton.

“Working at a Catholic hospital brought learning opportunities, and I explored the role that religion and faith has on a patient’s treatment decisions,” he said. “I worked with patients suffering from a variety of mental conditions. It required self-reflection and bias and stigma elimination surrounding mental health to build therapeutic relationships with the patients.”

As Nick finishes his clinical rotations and his undergraduate nursing career, he has found an unexpected passion for pediatrics.

“For so long, I told myself that I wouldn't like pediatrics without any backing to that assumption,” he said. “Having the opportunity to work in the pediatric unit in the emergency department Massachusetts General Hospital completely changed my perception. The nurses’ passion resonated with me, and I shared their enthusiasm in a way that was different from any of the other specialties. It was a surprise, but a very pleasant one.”

Excited for what the future holds, Nick is spending his senior year striving for success in academics, as well as success in his social and mental health as an individual. He is exploring his post-graduation options through graduate programs in pediatric emergency departments in Seattle, Denver and Boston.

 “Simply, but most importantly, I plan to spend these years living a life that I can look back on in 50 years and be proud of.”