Voltaire Pabustan, B.A.
How has your involvement in student clubs impacted you and/or the community you serve? A couple of friends and I created the Recreational Networking Club here on campus and it has been pretty successful up to this point. Being part of the club, especially one that specializes in creating activities outside of school, has been an integral part of the entire experience at WesternU. There’s only so much time I can devote to studying and schoolwork before I feel like I’m going to lose my mind. Being able to organize and be a part of a social club gives me a chance to relax, take a breather, and just have fun with what little time is available during the program. We at the club believe that all students can benefit from being part of a club, whether it is RNc or any other club, because it helps to re-energize a person once they start having that “burn out” feeling from school.
Julia Fukuhara, RN, PHN, BS
Who is your favorite faculty member and why? The faulty play a crucial role in nursing education and bring individual strengths to the program. Dean Hanford shares her years of experience with life examples, and always has time for a student. Lisa Miklush shows her joy in teaching, and babies, during lecture. Mary Lopez engages students providing exercises and examples in ICU and research nursing. Lisa Goldstein has a positive energy and contagious laugh when she talks about maternal and child health; yet a deep passion and concern for the community. Patti Shakhshir brings her calm aura while teaching palliative and end-of life care. Marci Horowitz always lends an ear and provides motherly-like advice possibly coming from her work with children and adolescents.
Rose Juanita Mays
Why WesternU? WesternU provides collegiality within a caring environment as it sets high standards to prepare doctoral students.The facullty demonstrate expertise carried out with rigor and fairness.You will have an enjoyable experience as you expand your knowledge and advance your professional career.
How has your involvement in student clubs impacted you and/or the community you serve? WesternU-DNP Association provided networking and increased level of confidence.
Pat Callard, MSN, RN, CNE
WesternU distinctive: The Health Systems Leadership focus in the MSN program provides opportunities to apply content from the classroom in a practice experience in the hospital or other health care setting. Our faculty work closely together to ensure that our students have the support and education to successfully complete their advanced nursing education.
Value of a WesternU-CGN education: CGN graduates are respected members of the nursing profession who make a difference as professional registered nurses in all areas of nursing practice from the bedside to the executive level.
About the College of Graduate Nursing: CGN faculty maintain high standards for student performance and success. Faculty work closely together to provide our students with the knowledge and experiences to be successful nursing leaders in any practice setting.
Marci Luxenburg Horowitz, MSN, RN, PHN
WesternU distinctive: We have a master’s entry into nursing at WesternU, meaning the students who enter this program have a bachelor’s degree in another field and have decided to come into nursing upon completing their bachelor’s or as a second career. These are an exciting group of students to work with because they chose professional nursing for all the right reasons. They know that to be a professional nurse, they have to be well-rounded, smart, creative, caring, assertive, tough, etc. Our students emerge from the program as strong professional nurses. They have a solid foundation of scientific knowledge and professional skills undergirded by an ethic of caring. These students are highly valued by their employers. It is a privilege to work with them.
Why WesternU: It was important to me that I teach at a university whose philosophy and values where in alignment with my own. I wanted to work in an environment where excellence and caring were valued.
Best thing about WesternU: We value each other and our relationships with one another. True learning occurs in an environment of care, support, and teamwork.
Interprofessional collaboration: Meeting client and family health needs in today’s complex healthcare system requires healthcare professionals who can function within an interprofessional healthcare team. Interprofessional education will enhance students’ understanding and appreciation of other healthcare professions while enhancing their abilities to work together to improve patient outcomes. This will be second nature to our students when they enter professional practice.
Best advice: Buildings do not make a university, people make the university. They are the heart and soul of the institution. As a university, we continually maintain an environment of excellence and care, which fosters the growth and development of caring, knowledgeable healthcare professionals.
Diana Lithgow, PhD, FNP-C, RN
We were the first in the county to offer an MSN/FNP web based program, and we continue to offer one of highest quality programs in the country–as testified to by our alumni and their employers. The Distance MSN programs are designed for the working RN to advance their degree while continuing to live and serve in their home community. This ultimately gives them the freedom to obtain their graduate degree wherever they chose to commit themselves geographically.
Serving vulnerable populations normally makes it difficult to obtain advanced nursing education–whether it be the military, remote or rural communities, or native American reservations–and our program enables this opportunity. Additionally, distance learning with local clinical emersion allows the nurse to maintain their family and community relationships while pursuing higher education.
Why did you choose WesternU? I chose to get my Masters of Science in Nursing at WesternU in the late fall when I attended the information session with other prospective students. As the CGN faculty and staff presented the MSN-E program to us, I was so impressed with the enthusiasm and passion they expressed. You could tell that the instructors love what they do, and I wanted to be one of their students. I left there so excited to begin my journey towards becoming a nurse. This was one of the best decisions I have ever made.
Why did you choose WesternU? I have wanted to go to WesternU ever since elementary school. Since it specializes in health sciences, WesternU has had all of the careers I’ve ever investigated. Initially, I wanted to be a veterinarian, then decided I wanted to be an osteopathic doctor. Ultimately, I felt that a career in nursing would be my ideal and I am thankful that WesternU has an awesome College of Graduate Nursing.
Why did you choose WesternU? I suppose I didn’t choose WesternU but rather they chose me. I did not know much about it before I had applied but when I began the program and met the professors I knew I had made the right decision in attending WesternU. I could have gone to Duke University but instead I chose WesternU due to the intimacy. As an undergraduate, I felt like a small fish in a big pond. Here at WesternU the pond is much smaller.
Ruth Pinter, MSN, FNP
Time commitment: As a “distance” student I was able to fit my study time into my daily activities. The staff is supportive and understanding when an event occurs that requires adjustments. Most of the time, however, it is easy to work within the parameters of life to meet deadlines.
WesternU distinctive: The entire program is engaging and really makes you think. There have been challenges, such as theory and research classes, but there is a sense of great accomplishment when these are completed well.
On humanism: All our lessons focus on the patient and the outcome for the patient or family. We’re taught that our interventions are for the benefit of our patients. Sometimes it is best not to intervene. The ethics class helped us understand that we need to listen to our patients and hear their needs. We can not always impose our beliefs on others. Respecting our patients as people is constantly emphasized.
Career impact: Learning to research and find the answers—we’ll use these skills throughout our careers. While scientific evidence can change how we practice, knowing how to find the most current information will never change.
I have actually told a friend who is interested in nursing to apply to WesternU because it is a professional school that focuses on student success.
Norma Young, MSN, FNP
WesternU distinctive: The program was very focused, challenging, and comprehensive. And all the professors were very committed to student success.
Favorite WesternU professor: Dr. Lithgow. She is bright, challenging, experienced, driven, and compassionate.
Career impact: We were ingrained to do thorough histories and physical exams. I think we were all encouraged to be honest, comprehensive, and address the issues at hand. Some of the phrases used in class still flow through my head as I do exams.
Best advice: It’s a lot of work. Very challenging. Very worthwhile! And a do-able way to achieve goals. I feel this whole experience was a way of determining how to make my mark and be a contributing individual on this increasingly crowded planet.
Robin Petersen, MSN, FNP
Most memorable clinical experience: I got clinical experience working with a family practice physician who fully supported the holistic approach to medicine. He also had a significant interest in missionary medicine in third world countries, so I learned a great deal about travel medicine as well.
Getting help: WesternU’s computer support was incredibly helpful, accessible, and patient with my computer ignorance.
Career impact: By getting my clinical experience in my own community, I made contacts and developed professional relationships that are still in effect today.