Seattle Cancer Care Alliance (SCCA) announced a partnership with GlassyBaby in 2016 to expand its nursing scholarships. The partnership led to the creation of the Rosemary Ford Future of Oncology Nursing Scholarship, which supports oncology nursing students at local colleges and universities, as well as SCCA nurses enrolled in advanced nursing programs.
Steven Pasek and Eleanore O’Neill, both BSN students at Seattle U, were among the recipients of the Rosemary Ford Future of Oncology Nursing Scholarship awarded by the Seattle Cancer Care Alliance (SCCA) in 2016-2017.
Seattle University nursing student Steven Pasek [pictured at left] accepts congratulations from Dr. Danuta Wojnar, Associate Dean of Undergraduate Studies at SU College of Nursing.
Steven Pasek was inspired to become a nurse by watching the work of medics and the care they provided to patients when he served in the military. As a student, he says that he “became fascinated by how therapeutic a nurse’s role was to a patient…I challenged myself to learn everything I could about caring for others.”
But it was Steven’s experience with a personal cancer diagnosis that led him to pursue studies to become an oncology nurse. “I know just how important a nurse is in the healing process for a patient coming in for cancer treatment,” he says. “I want to help patients navigate through the unknown during treatment.”
From a young age, Eleanore O’Neill knew she wanted to spend her life helping others. When she was diagnosed with melanoma at age seventeen her desire became a goal. She said, “My nurse supported me…her presence alone gave me a much-needed source of comfort.” The nursing care she received inspired her, she said, “From then on it became my goal to care for children suffering the way I did and to support their loved ones.”
As her treatments continued, Eleanore said, “witnessing the effect my battle had on my parents and siblings was one of the scariest aspects of my cancer experience.” Throughout her treatments, she said, “I was cared for by hundreds of wonderful nurses who positively impacted my life and my family’s life as well.” After completing her BSN, Eleanore plans to follow in the footsteps of the nurses who cared for her and her family by becoming a pediatric oncology nurse.
With this scholarship, SCCA honors Rosemary Ford’s 40-year legacy of nurturing the continuum of education in the nursing profession throughout their organization. Rosemary began her nursing work at SCCA partner organization Fred Hutch working alongside the Nobel Prize winner, Dr. Donnell Thomas, during the early years of the Bone Marrow Transplant (BMT) program. There she helped to establish the standard for BMT nursing. Now her work and influence extend to the broader field of oncology nursing through continuing education.