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Our nurses across the Froedtert & the Medical College of Wisconsin health network are at the center of every patient’s health care journey. From the operating room to the bedside, our nurses advocate for patients and their families, ensure the most accurate diagnoses, and coordinate care with a team of providers. Thanks to the generosity of our donors, the Froedtert Hospital Foundation offers life-changing scholarships for nurses, like Katherine and Madison, to further their careers.

Nine years ago, Katherine joined Froedtert Hospital as a patient care assistant and now works as a nurse in the medical ICU. “I knew once I came here that there is where I wanted to be. I was really impressed by what we can do for our patients,” said Katherine.

This December, Katherine will graduate with a Master of Science in Nursing to become a clinical nurse specialist. As advanced practice providers, clinical nurse specialists drive changes throughout the hospital, ensure the use of best practices and offer expertise to nurses caring for patients. “I was inspired to go back to school by my mentor who always has a positive outlook and works tirelessly to improve our nursing care,” she shared. “With this degree, I hope to have a greater impact on our patients, the practice of nursing and the hospital. I have a lot of gratitude for our donors for helping staff like me reach our goals and dreams.”

Originally on the path to become a teacher, Madison was encouraged by her college roommates to study nursing instead. “At first I was afraid of needles and blood – it was scary to start but soon I loved it,” she shared. While in college, Madison got a job at Froedtert Hospital as a CNA in the resource pool, which allowed her to work in many departments and specialty areas throughout the hospital. After graduation, she transitioned to the inpatient oncology floor. “I really enjoy working with our patient population. Cancer doesn’t discriminate. You meet truly kind, genuine people from all over the state. This work has given me a different outlook on life.”

Madison has been inspired to further her career in nursing by one of the nurse practitioners on her floor. “She always knows the answers to our questions – I want to be like that!” she shared. The scholarship opened doors for Madison to pursue her degree despite the challenge of COVID-19. “It’s hard for people outside of health care to fully understand how hard the start of the pandemic was. The lack of PPE [personal protective equipment], the stress of not seeing my family and financial worries all took a toll. This scholarship provided hope during a really difficult time.”

Madison is now halfway through completing her master’s degree and will start clinicals next semester. “Froedtert & MCW are really good at retaining their staff,” she said. “The opportunity to grow from a CNA to a nurse to an advanced provider builds a dedicated workforce that furthers the hospital’s values and ensures a strong continuity of patient care. I am so grateful for this support.”

Learn more about the foundation and how to support nursing scholarships by visiting the Froedtert Hospital Foundation website or calling 414-805-2699.

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