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Senior nursing student receives national award

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September 06, 2013

Kayla AlbrightKayla Albright

Kayla Albright has always had a passion for helping others.

The senior nursing major plans to use her passion and learning experience at Georgia College to make a difference in the lives of those in need.

“I never really decided to be a nurse. It just came naturally to me,” said Albright. “Right now, I am an extern at the Medical Center of Central Georgia in the intensive care unit (ICU). My goal is to continue to do that same kind of work when I graduate.”

Albright’s dedication and commitment to her future profession has earned her national recognition from the American Psychiatric Nurses Association (APNA).

She received a full scholarship to participate in the 27th annual APNA Conference in San Antonio, Texas in October.

“My professor Dr. Flor Culpa-Bondal recommended me for the scholarship and encouraged me to apply,” she said. “Only 15 students from across the country were chosen for the APNA Board of Directors Student Scholarships, so I feel very honored and proud that I, as a student from Georgia College, will be involved in such an intensive learning opportunity.”

The award was based on three essays Albright wrote focusing on psychiatric nursing skills and competencies in the community and medical-surgical setting.

Her scholarship includes an all-expenses-paid trip to the conference, one-year membership to APNA and the experience of co-moderating at least one session during the conference.

“She was nominated because she is a leader and is compassionate about psychiatric care in the community,” said Culpa-Bondal. “Her passion and leadership skills stem from her open-mindedness and tolerance of diversity. Her love for adventure, two study abroad trips and mission trip experience provides her with a rich and well-rounded perspective and approach to nursing.”

Albright hopes this will give her a new perspective on psychiatric nursing and more training to prepare her to care for patients.

“Some nurses have only a little experience caring for psychiatric patients,” said Albright. “I think this experience will make me a more knowledgeable nurse as I begin my career.”

Founded in 1986, APNA has grown to be the largest professional membership organization committed to the specialty practice of psychiatric-mental health nursing, wellness promotion, prevention of mental health problems and the care and treatment of persons with psychiatric disorders. APNA membership totals more than 9,000 psychiatric mental health nurses from all over the world.

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To learn more about Georgia College’s nursing program, visit the School of Nursing website.

ABOUT GEORGIA COLLEGE: Georgia College, the state’s designated Public Liberal Arts University, combines the educational experience expected at esteemed private liberal arts colleges with the affordability of public higher education. Its four colleges – arts and sciences, business, education and health sciences – provide 6,600 undergraduate and graduate students with an exceptional learning environment that extends beyond the classroom, with hands-on involvement with faculty research, community service, study abroad and myriad internships.

Founded in 1889, Georgia College boasts one of the most beautiful campuses in the nation with Corinthian columns fronting red brick buildings and wide open green spaces. Georgia College also offers graduate education at the historic Jefferson building in downtown Macon, at Robins Air Force Base and online.

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