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Saint Alphonsus scholarship recipients connect with health system leaders

A crowd of people stand behind four foot tall letters that spell out Boise State.

Nearly 40 College of Health Sciences students had the unique opportunity on Sept. 28 to sit down for dinner and talk one-to-one with leaders from Saint Alphonsus Health System. These “Saint Alphonsus Scholars” asked executives and senior staff from the health system their career questions and gained an understanding of Saint Alphonsus culture and mission from the people who know it best.

Students who received a Saint Alphonsus Health System/Trinity Health scholarship in the past two years were invited to attend.

The dinner was also a way for the university to acknowledge the contribution Saint Alphonsus makes each year to help remove financial barriers for students in the college. Their scholarship support for 2022-2023 provides 50 awards for undergraduate and graduate students that totals $221,000.

Although there have been university-wide scholarship dinners in the past, this event was the first of its kind. Hosted by the college advancement team, the dinner was dedicated solely to connecting donors with health sciences students.

“As a Saint Alphonsus scholarship recipient, I was honored and excited to be able to meet and share my gratitude with the people who made those funds possible.”

– Deb Black, senior nursing student

“The leaders from Saint Alphonsus were very engaging and offered valuable insights and tips from their careers and experiences,” Black said.

During the evening, four Saint Alphonsus executives and directors – who are also Boise State alumni – contributed to a lively panel discussion: Scott Christensen ‘85, Dave McFadyen ’98, Annie Fratusco ‘02, Ashley Mason ‘19. They answered questions and shared personal insights to give attendees a better idea of what a future with Saint Alphonsus Health System could look like.

Four people sit in chairs and speak to an audience sitting at tables in front of them.

“I enjoyed the panel discussion because it gave me a good sense of the positive, respectful community that Saint Alphonsus strives to build among its employees,” said Black. “It really felt like they took the hospital’s mission and vision of compassion and reverence and incorporated them into all of their interactions.”

As a nursing student, Black is also doing clinical rotations at Saint Alphonsus; she has gotten the same sense of respect and collaboration from the nurses she’s worked with while there.

“It makes me feel like Saint Alphonsus would be a good place for me to start my career because of the culture they have of building each other up,” she said. Black graduates this December.

The College of Health Sciences is grateful for the investment Saint Alphonsus and its parent company Trinity Health have made since 2014 to increase educational access and success of Boise State students.

Amy Spurlock, the associate divisional dean and chief nursing administrator of the School of Nursing, attended the dinner. She affirmed that “Saint Alphonsus and Trinity Health are essential partners for the School of Nursing as they provide many scholarships for our students and clinical placements that enrich and prepare future nurses.”

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