JMU hosts Virginia Nursing Students' Association state convention


By: Katherine Gentry
Creative Services Student Writer

PHOTO: JMU Nursing students assemble hygiene packs

Alyssa Williams (left) leads a team in assembling personal care bags for Suitcase Clinic

On February 10, 2018, James Madison University hosted the Virginia Nursing Students’ Association state convention for the second year in a row. According to JMU nursing student and newly-elected president of the VNSA Alyssa Williams, the convention offers nursing students an opportunity to learn about different specialties and roles in nursing and fosters professional development. The VNSA invites speakers to broaden students’ understanding of the field of nursing and representatives from healthcare facilities come to explain the opportunities available to nursing students. Williams said, “Having a day dedicated to growing as nurses is really our main purpose and it allows us to help other nursing students.”

PHOTO: JMU Students at career fair

A desire to help others is what initially led Williams to study nursing at JMU. Williams explained, “I always wanted to help people, but I wasn’t sure about what I wanted to do until I had been admitted to JMU and came to CHOICES as a prospective student. I went to the School of Nursing information session and I looked at my dad and said, ‘This is where I need to be to help people.’ It was great to hear about how JMU was helping all of these vulnerable populations and see that I would have a chance to help too.”

Organizing a statewide service project for the Suitcase Clinic in Harrisonburg gave Williams an opportunity to serve the local homeless population. Williams coordinated with chapters across Virginia to collect travel size personal hygiene items that were assembled into over 300 personal care bags for patients at the Suitcase Clinic.

At the convention, JMU placed third for their scrapbook and first for the most active constituency award. JMU’s chapter accumulated over 850 points which are earned in several ways including the number of members, participation in VNSA events and having members on the VNSA board. In addition to winning these awards, seven JMU students were elected to board positions and will serve until the state convention next year.

Williams said her favorite part of the convention was getting to meet and work with nursing students from all over Virginia.

Published: Thursday, March 1, 2018

Last Updated: Thursday, March 1, 2018

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