Student Luncheon Recognizes Service and Achievement

On Monday, Sept. 11, student registered nurse anesthetists from around the country gathered for one of the signature events planned for them at the Nurse Anesthesia Annual Congress: the 2017 Student Luncheon. The event introduces the new student representative to the Education Committee and recognizes student award winners. ​

The luncheon was supported in part by National Board of Certification and Recertification for Nurse Anesthetists.

Fiscal year 2017 Student Representative to the Education Committee Joshua Franklin, MSNA, CRNA, served as the master of ceremonies for the luncheon, introducing a slate of speakers that included AANA President Cheryl Nimmo, DNP, MSHSA, CRNA; AANA Foundation Chair Wilma Gillis, CRNA, BSN, APNP; NBCRNA Treasurer Mary Wojnakowski, PhD, CRNA; and AANA Education Committee Chair Nate Apatov, PhD, MHS, MSN, CRNA, ARNP.

“I think students energize the room—no matter what room it is—when they walk in the door,” said Nimmo. “We are very invested in your future and want only the best for you.”

“The future is yours, but you have to work for it,” she continued.

Student Scholarships

The AANA Foundation received 1,007 competitive scholarship applications this year, and 54 were awarded, totaling $115,000. AANA Foundation Chair Wilma Gillis spoke about the role the AANA Foundation plays in funding nurse anesthesia research and urged students at the luncheon to support the Foundation throughout their career. At the end of the luncheon, scholarship recipients and sponsors gathered for a group photo.

Award Presentations

Education Committee Chair Nate Apatov, PhD, MHS, MSN, CRNA, ARNP, announced the winners of two awards: the Student Writing Contest and the Student Excellence Award.

The winner of the 2017 Student Writing Contest is Austin Lobbestael, RN, BSN, for his paper titled “Anesthetic Management of a Pregnant Patient with Myasthenia Gravis Undergoing Laparoscopic Surgery: A Case Study.” Lobbestael is a senior student registered nurse anesthetist at the University of Michigan-Flint/Hurley Medical Center Master of Science in Anesthesia Program in Flint, Mich.

The winner of the Student Excellence Award is Sara Wilkinson, RN, BSN, a student at the University of Tennessee Health Science Center College of Nursing Nurse Anesthesia Option. The award is presented to a student in good academic standing who demonstrates outstanding leadership and professionalism during their program, participates in activities that foster a positive public image of nursing, participates in activities that foster high-quality healthcare to consumers, or engages in volunteer activities of community service or support of healthcare. The student must be nominated by the program administrator or the program administrator’s faculty designee.

Congratulations to the New Student Representative to the Education Committee

Devin Miller, RN, BSN, was elected the fiscal year 2018 student representative to the AANA Education Committee. He is a student at Wake Forest Baptist Health/Wake Forest School of Medicine Nurse Anesthesia Program.

Miller earned his BSN from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Prior to entering his nurse anesthesia program, he worked at Duke University Hospital’s Cardiac intensive care unit, eventually acting as charge nurse and rapid response nurse before traveling to ICUs across the country.  Miller was an active member of the American Association of Critical Care Nurses and served on its Cardiac Medicine Certification Exam Development Committee.

At Wake Forest, Miller is president of the Student Professional Awareness Committee, which helps students understand functions of professional organizations, employment options, and implications of legislative policy at the state and national levels.