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Stony Brook University School of Nursing

Nicole Jellen with her nursing mentor, Lani Blanco. Photo courtesy Jeanne Neville

Nicole Jellen, a Stony Brook University School of Nursing student, has been named a 2024 recipient of the SUNY Chancellor’s Award for Student Excellence (CASE). This award is the highest honor that can bestowed upon a student by the University. A student leader, peer educator, and active volunteer, Jellen will receive this honor at a ceremony in Albany on April 11. This May she will graduate with a Bachelor of Science Degree from the School of Nursing.

According to the SUNY Chancellor’s office, the award “honors SUNY students who have successfully integrated SUNY excellence into many different aspects of their lives, including academics, leadership, campus involvement, community service, or creative and performing arts.” The award also celebrates students’ abilities to lead, give back, and be role models for fellow students.

Growing up in Port Jefferson Station, Jellen was intrigued by nursing as a young girl as she saw her mother, Jessica Jellen, work as a neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) nurse and make a huge difference in the lives of babies, and their families. Jellen decided early on to pursue nursing as a career.

She was nominated for the CASE award by four leading Nursing faculty. Jellen has flourished as a nursing student at Stony Brook in all areas of academics and service.

Jellen maintained academic excellence all four years and achieved a 3.94 GPA. She was elected President of the Pre-Nursing Society in 2023, where she served as a mentor and teacher to students. She is also a pathophysiology and pharmacology tutor to fellow students.

Additionally, Jellen is a certified nursing assistant, March of Dimes volunteer, a volunteer educator about domestic violence, and a member of and part of the social media committee for Sigma Kappa Gamma, an academic honor society in Nursing.

Jellen is setting the bar high for her future too. She aspires to be an Intensive Care Unit (ICU) nurse after graduation, specifically in the Cardiothoracic ICU, and hopes to become a Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetist.

“My mother inspired me to take on the path of nursing, and as a nurse I hope to make my patients’ darkest days a little brighter,” says Jellen. “The Stony Brook School of Nursingexperience has transformed me in the best way possible. The faculty, my classmates, and coworkers continue to remind me just how fulfilling nursing as a field truly is.”

Professor Lani Blanco, MA, RN, Jellen’s School of Nursing mentor, and one of the faculty who nominated her, describes Jellen as a student who has not only stood out in her academics and passion for nursing but also for her outstanding community service and compassion – all great qualities for a future nurse.

“Her achievements have made such a lasting impact to aspiring and current nursing students, the School of Nursing, the University, and to the communities we serve,” says Blanco. “The world needs nurses now more than ever, and I look forward to the wonderful and significant impact she will make in the field of nursing.”


Jaclyn Jahn in the Nursing clinical skills training area with Janet Galiczewski, DNP. Photo by Jeanne Neville

Jaclyn Jahn, a Stony Brook University School of Nursing student who will graduate on May 17, has been named the recipient of the 2023 Future Nurse Leader Award by the American Nurses Association – New York (ANA-NY).

The Future Nurse Leader Award is given to students nominated by their respective school as outstanding students who demonstrate leadership, make significant contributions to their school, promote activity in nursing organizations, and embody the values and ethics of nursing. This year ANA-NY is awarding 17 students in New York State with the honor.

Janet Galiczewski, DNP, Clinical Associate Professor, and Chair of Undergraduate Studies in the School of Nursing, and an ASA member, nominated Jahn for the award.

“Jaclyn Jahn has not only strong academic and leadership skills, she is caring, empathetic, and compassionate with patients and their families, and ensures that their questions are always answered,” says Galiczewski.

Jahn, a Long Island native from Rockville Centre, is enrolled in the baccalaureate nursing program and one of the students selected for the school’s Nursing Scholars Program, which includes students who have high academic standing and are involved with extracurricular work related to the field. She was nominated for the award by School of Nursing leadership for her scholarship, student leadership skills at Stony Brook and statewide, and her involvement in nursing-related research.

While at Stony Brook, Jahn demonstrated excellence in her coursework and displayed her leadership skills to help advance Stony Book’s chapter of the Student Nurses Association, first as second VP and as its current President. In this capacity, she coordinated many community service activities. Jahn also extended her leadership skills outside Stony Brook and served as the Northeast Regional Director for the Nursing Student Association of New York State.

Jahn has also demonstrated excellence in the field of discovery. Before she began her nursing studies, she contributed to a published paper related to aortic valve replacement in the Journal of International Cardiology. As part of the Nursing Scholars Program, she conducted research with the former dean of the school on the association between financial resources, student resources, and student success. She presented the findings at a conference by the Eastern Nursing Research Society this spring.

A graduate of South Side High School in Rockville Centre, Jahn took part in many clinical services at Stony Brook and other medical institutions on Long Island as part of her training, including Covid and Influenza vaccination dispensing at Stony Brook.

Jahn is Basic Life Support certified, HIPPAA and CITI trained, and has completed Sexual Assault and Suicide Prevention Bystander Intervention training. She also completed red watch band training at Stony Brook with others for the upstanding award.

Jahn’s goal is to become a critical care nurse working in an Intensive Care Unit.

Caption: Jaclyn Jahn in the Nursing clinical skills training area with Janet Galiczewski, DNP.

Credit: Jeanne Neville

Celebrating the Future of Nursing

The Stony Brook University School of Nursing held its first “Oath Ceremony” for students entering its undergraduate programs. The purpose of the ceremony – devised similarly to Medicine’s white coat ceremony – is to welcome students into the profession and highlight the impact that nursing brings to society and patients worldwide. A total of 132 students participated in the ceremony that carried the theme “Keep Healthcare Human.”

Held on October 29 at Stony Brook Medicine, the event was made possible with a grant from the Arnold P. Gold Foundation to support the Gold-AACN White Coat/Oath Ceremony for Nursing.

The American Nursing Association predicts more registered nurse jobs will be available through 2022 than any other profession in the United States. Additionally, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics projects that 11 million additional nurses are needed in the next few years to avoid a further nursing shortage – an issue that has surfaced even more during the 2020-21 Covid-19 pandemic. The Bureau also projects with the aging population and specialized medicine nursing positions will grow at a faster rate (approximately 15 percent) than all other occupations from 2016 to 2026.

“This ceremony marks a milestone in the career path of our students who choose to become professional nurses in the face of a pandemic,” says Annette Wysocki, PhD, Dean of the School of Nursing. “All nurses are called to care for individuals, families and communities using the most advanced scientific knowledge with an ethical human-centered approach, in combination with knowledge of the social sciences to address the biopsychosocial needs of people entrusted to their care.”

Dean Wysocki also points out that the need for nurses will only grow, as the pandemic has driven many older nurses to retire, leaving a gap in the workforce in New York State and nationwide.

Each of the students at the ceremony, upon having their name called,  received a pouch with a nursing pin, nursing code of ethics bookmark and a card about keeping humanism in nursing.

Long-time Stony Brook nurse practitioner and educator Barbara Mills, DNP, was the keynote speaker. Mills received her doctorate in Nursing at Stony Brook in 2009 and has been a key member transforming the hospital’s Rapid Response Team. Her message emphasized keeping healthcare human and treating every patient with dignity, respect, and with cultural sensitivity.

Many of the new students have volunteered during the pandemic for the vaccine rollout and related work at Stony Brook Medicine. Because Stony Brook is an upper division nursing school, students enter the undergraduate program after their sophomore year in college. These students, encompassing two academic years, and those students entering the accelerated 12-month nursing program participated in the ceremony.