The Carmel Rapper

May 4, 2020

Virtual Commencement

Celebrating Our Graduates Virtually

The MCCN Class of 2020 has experienced many unforeseen challenges due to the COVID-19 pandemic. We are so extremely proud of all of our graduates and the hard work they have put in to earn their degrees, despite the challenges COVID-19 has created. Although we are unable to host a traditional, in-person Commencement Ceremony to ensure the health and safety of all, we will honor and celebrate our graduates with a Virtual Commencement Ceremony to share with family and friends on Saturday, May 9, at noon. Find the ceremony, along with photos of each of our graduates, and encouraging messages from our alumni and faculty and staff on our new Commencement 2020 web page. Please submit photos of how you and your family are celebrating Virtual Commencement while staying safe and healthy to Camryn Stobart, College Relations Intern, at

Mount Carmel Alumna is Virtual Commencement Speaker

Jeri A. Milstead

The 2020 Commencement Speaker, Jeri A. Milstead ’57, PhD, RN, NEA-BC, FAAN, is a 1957 graduate of the Mount Carmel School of Nursing and a recipient of the Mount Carmel Distinguished Alumni Award. She is an internationally renowned expert in public policy and the politics of health care, and has won numerous awards and honors, including being inducted this June into the American Nurses Association Hall of Fame. Be sure to hear her stirring and memorable message for the Class of 2020 on May 9.

Message From the President

Ann Marie Brooks

First, I want to say Happy Nurses Week to everyone and a big thank you to each of you – students, faculty and staff, as well as all of our family members for persevering over these last two months of dealing with the impacts of COVID-19. It has been a difficult time, but my prediction that we would face it and overcome it together has proven true. So, thank you all.

Second, in spite of having to change how we learn, work, relate and play, we are looking forward to celebrating the Class of 2020 in a Virtual Commencement Ceremony on May 9. A great deal of hard work went into very quickly pulling together a ceremony that will honor the extremely hard work of all our graduates – 211 will receive the Bachelor of Science in Nursing; 62 will add “MS” to their credentials; and two will begin practicing at the highest clinical level in nursing with the Doctor of Nursing Practice degree. In addition, eight graduate students have earned a post-master’s certification. We are very proud of each accomplishment! For more detail, see “Commencement 2020” below.

Finally, I bid you farewell as I leave MCCN on May 15 to return to consulting and leading Magnet visits. These last three years have been among the best in my wonderful career and I shall hold dear my memory of each of you. I’m very proud of MCCN, its students and alumni, and I’m proud of the collaboration – with the Board of Trustees, MCHS Administration, and MCCN’s faculty and staff – that has led to many accomplishments, including enrichment of the student experience, new academic and recognition programs and development and implementation of a strategic plan that will continue to serve the College well over this next period of time.

I’m delighted that your Academic Dean, Kathleen Williamson, PhD, RN, will assume the combined role of President and Academic Dean and will carry forward the legacy of excellence in nursing established by our founders, the Sisters of the Holy Cross, in 1903. I know that each of you will support Dr. Williamson’s efforts follow her guidance and do your very best. You will hear from her in the next edition of the Carmel Rapper.

May God bless Mount Carmel College of Nursing now and in the future.


Dr. Ann Marie Brooks

Ann Marie Brooks, PhD, MBA, RN, FAAN, FACHE, FNAP
President, Mount Carmel College of Nursing

Blum to Be Commissioned Following Commencement

Julia Blum

ROTC (Reserve Officers’ Training Corps) member and graduate of MCCN’s Class of 2020, Julia Blum will receive her commission a Second Lieutenant (2nd Lt.) in the United States Army immediately following Commencement on May 9. Julia is a member of MCCN’s Rho Omicron chapter of Sigma Theta Tau International Honor Society of Nursing, and will receive a Gold Stole indicating her Summa Cum Laude (grade point average 3.80—4.00) status.

“I never really thought of pursuing anything but nursing,” says Julia, whose hometown is Canal Winchester. “When I was a child, I remember my mom coming home after working 12-hour night shifts and asking her so many questions about what she did. After watching her raise a family of four while completing nursing school at Columbus State and working nights, I never even considered another career.”

When asked why she chose a military path, Julia replied, “Honestly, I needed something to challenge me more. I was working part time as a tech in the Medical Intermediate Care Unit at Mount Carmel East at the same time I was drowning in Anatomy & Physiology Fundamentals. However, I just knew I could serve in a greater capacity while pushing myself to be better mentally and physically, so my sophomore year spring semester I reached out to Army ROTC,” she says.

A few weeks later she went to Basic Camp at U.S. Army Cadet Command in Fort Knox, Kentucky. Once she passes the NCLEX, she will receive orders for Army Medical Department (AMEDD) Basic Officer Leadership Course in Fort Sam Houston, Texas. Upon completion of that nine-week course, she will then complete the six-to-12-month Clinical Nurse Transition Program, which she anticipates will be at Fort Lewis in Washington state.

“Army ROTC at OSU truly changed my life and I recommend that anyone who is unsure of what they want to do or is questioning their abilities, should go for it. My career plan is to stay in the Army Nurse Corps long-term, due to the educational opportunities and career advancement. I would like to attend the critical care specialty course, attend specialty schools such as Airborne, Air Assault and eventually specialize in critical care or psychiatric care.”

Julia is proud to become part of a long tradition of military nursing at MCCN – from the Sisters of the Holy Cross, who provided care for soldiers aboard the Civil War-era hospital ship, U.S.S. Red Rover, to 21st century students who participate in either of MCCN’s ROTC programs – US Army or US Air Force – many Mount Carmel nurses have answered their country’s call to serve. MCCN’s Army ROTC program was started in 2005 as an affiliate of the program at The Ohio State University, known as the Buckeye Brigade. MCCN students who enter the rigorous program go to the OSU campus for military leadership courses and early morning physical training in addition to their MCCN coursework and clinicals. Their reputation for being respectful, conscientious and engaged in all aspects of their lives is remarkable.

Congratulations, Julia – you do us proud!

Brooks with Balloons

Dr. Brooks: These Are A Few Of Her Favorite Things

As Dr. Brooks wraps up her time at MCCN, we have asked her to reflect on some of her favorite things during her time as MCCN President.

1. What is your favorite memory while at MCCN?

My favorite memory was visiting students in the Mount Carmel West cafeteria at 0630 in the morning with Dr. Ann Waterman and talking with the students and their clinical instructors before they went upstairs for their clinical experience. I loved telling them how great they looked in their white uniforms, sharing stories about what patients and nurses might expect from them and Ann and I both telling them how proud we were that they chose to pursue a nursing career. Clinical faculty always made us feel welcome! Ann was a great colleague and loves students so we had a wonderful time being cheerleaders for their journey of learning!

2. What is your favorite event you’ve attended?

There are so many favorites, but one that is so memorable is my Commissioning as President in November 2018. The beautiful event held with a Mass in the MSB Auditorium celebrated by a dear friend, Father Jerry Francik was so special. My sister and dear friends from Maryland were part of my cheering section. Right before the Mass began, my brother and his wife, my cousin and his wife, Dean of Catholic University School of Nursing and Associate Dean for Research, had all come to surprise me. At the reception, my roommate from my days as an Army nurse at West Point and her husband also came to provide support! Having my sister, my dear friends Brian and Rosanne, Fr. Jerry celebrating the Mass and MCCN Board of Trustees members, faculty, and staff, and Mount Carmel Health System leaders and colleagues made the event one of faith and hope that I will never forget!

3. What will you miss most about MCCN?

I will miss the people and living the mission of MCCN! I have been blessed by being President to work with so many people here in the College, in MCHS, in Trinity and in the community. Students, faculty, staff, alumni, MCCN Board of Trustees members, Mount Carmel Health System leaders and so many others have been partners, coaches, mentors, friends and supporters of doing what is right! I have learned so much and am grateful for the opportunity to serve!

4. What has been a gift you will treasure most from someone at MCCN?

Among my favorite gifts are the chocolates that Pat McKnight, MS, RDN, LD, LADA, FAND, sends me for major holidays and events. I cherish her thoughtfulness and generosity and feel that she is giving me permission to eat chocolate!

5. What is your favorite stuffed animal from your collection?

My favorite animal from my collection is the lion! I grew to love lions (king of the jungle) while on a South African safari and noted how lions do not use their voice (roar) until needed. I love the lion because it reminds me to use the roar when there is a situation that needs immediate attention! It reassures me that we can all use the “roar” because we are strong and know what to do.

6. What is your favorite restaurant in Columbus?

Tommy’s – I love Tommy, his sons, his wife the pastry chef and all the waitresses that take care of us.

7. What is your favorite drink?

Arnold Palmer – iced tea and lemonade.

8. What has been your go-to snack while at MCCN?

Happily, it is always chocolate. I keep M&Ms, Hershey’s Kisses and Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups in my office at all times. I add Peppermint Patties and other treats when needed.

9. What has been your favorite season to experience in Columbus?

Football season – high energy, lots of excitement, people and great food! I love being with Ohio State fans and feeling their joys and sadness with their team and players. I love sports, so being in Columbus has been great.

10.What was your favorite class to visit?

I loved visiting all the classes but especially visiting students in their clinical setting. Professors Frieda Gill, MS, RN, CCRN, and Mary Gregg, MS, RN, CNM, took me out to various clinical settings and I really enjoyed seeing students being part of interprofessional health care teams and feeling appreciated for their work!

Nurses Week

Celebrating Nurses Like Never Before

In February, the U.S. Congress voted to recognize the year 2020 as the Year of the Nurse and Midwife (read more here). As we approach National Nurses Day on Wednesday, May 6, and what would have been Florence Nightingale’s 100th birthday on Tuesday, May 12, we want to take a moment to thank all of the current nurses and those who have chosen to pursue their life’s calling as a professional nurse in these challenging times. It takes special character to care for others and put oneself on the front lines of a war against an invisible enemy. To quote Dr. Amy Acton, director of the Ohio Department of Health, “Not all heroes wear capes.” Thank you, current and future nurses!

Anna Brown

Senior Writing Award Winner: Anna Brown! (Submitted by Amanda Page, MFA, associate professor)

Anna Brown was going to be an interior designer.

It was a day she spent shadowing a nurse that changed her mind. Brown was a senior in high school in Hilliard, Ohio, when she took the opportunity to spend a day with a nurse at Nationwide Children’s Hospital.

That day changed the course of her life.

“My mother was a nurse,” Brown says, “and I knew I wanted meaningful human interaction.”

Brown came to Mount Carmel College of Nursing and worked to implement strategies to be successful. By the time she reached graduation in May 2020, Brown was recipient of MCCN’s annual Senior Writing Award. The award comes with a $500 honorarium, a certificate presented at graduation, and a feature in The Carmel Rapper.

The topic of Brown’s winning paper was nurse burnout. “I wanted an area that had a decent amount of research behind it,” Brown says. “It was also very applicable to me personally, as well as many new nurses.”

“It scares me because this could be me in a year or two, but it’s also good to be aware of the statistics.”

Brown was not aware of the Senior Writing Award. Although she did not utilize the academic support resources at the College, she did work hard at revising her paper. “For papers in particular, I wish I’d used more resources,” Brown says. “But, I proofread like crazy and read it aloud a lot. I used Grammarly.”

“I think the biggest thing I was noticing about burnout was communication among nurses. I learned a lot about advocating for myself. I’m not a nurse yet,” Brown says,” but I look forward to seeing the challenges ahead.”

Although she is not a nurse yet, Brown is a multi-skilled technician at Mount Carmel East. “I want to stay at Mount Carmel,” Brown says. And after her research on burnout, “I’m excited to learn how to build support.”

The Lamp

MCCN’s The Lamp Wins Award

Congratulations to the College Relations team: The Summer 2019 issue of MCCN’s magazine, the Lamp, earned a Silver Award in the 37th Annual Healthcare Advertising Awards, which received 4,200 entries. Jaron Terry Communications and Cooney Design worked with staff and faculty to create the alumni and donor publication.

Library Update

Advice from your Librarians on Final Exams

“Don’t cheat! Life will depend on your decision in the future.” —Stevo

“Don’t change your answer! When in doubt, leave the answer blank and come back to it at the end.” —Noreen

“Always go back and review your answers.” —Ken

Library Remote Assistance

Remember, your Library is here to help you prepare for final exams. You can connect with the Library from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday through Friday by:

Library Accounts

If you are a student at MCCN, you already have a library account.

  • Username = Last Name
  • Password = Student ID

If you are still having trouble logging in, contact us.

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