Blue Island Community Healthcare Foundation Awards Scholarships to SXU Nursing Students

BICH FoundationFour Saint Xavier University (SXU) students from the School of Nursing (SON) have been awarded scholarships of $2,500 each from the Blue Island Community Healthcare Foundation for the 2015-2016 school year. The students are Katherine Clark, Brian Conrad, Roxana Flores Oliva, and Melissa Jeka.

Katherine Clark is a senior nursing student from Oak Lawn. She has served on the Nominations and Elections Committee for the Student Nurses Association of Illinois and was vice president of SXU’s Student Nurses Association this past year. She currently works at Advocate Children’s Hospital as a patient care tech on the Pediatric Surgical Heart Unit. She hopes to continue working for Advocate after completing her RN.

Brian Conrad of Mount Greenwood is a Junior II nursing student. He’s currently working as a collegiate nurse at Mercy Hospital, but his long-term nursing goals include fostering health literacy within the community, in particular, approaches to tackling obesity through positive nutritional choices.

Roxana Flores Oliva is from Blue Island. She is a Junior I nursing student with a minor in Spanish. Upon becoming a nurse, she plans to use her Spanish fluency to encourage and provide health care in communities where language may be an obstacle, “because,” she states, “there should not be any barriers preventing a patient from receiving the care they deserve.”

Melissa Jeka is a senior nursing major from Evergreen Park. In addition to being a full-time student, Melissa works at a busy restaurant, is a single parent, and participates in SXU’s Student Success Program. She hopes to become a labor and delivery nurse, in part because she experienced firsthand how valuable great patient care is when she gave birth to her son.

These experiences, along with a quality SXU education, are sure to make all four of these scholarship recipients excellent nurses in the future. The students and SXU are grateful to Blue Island Community Healthcare Foundation for its generous gift.

Founded in the 1970s as a supporting organization for St. Francis Hospital, Blue Island Community Healthcare Foundation continues the legacy started by St. Francis Hospital, which operated as a nonprofit in Blue Island, IL for over a century. The organization now funds various charitable groups that serve the area in providing such services as health screenings, programs for disabled children and adults, assistance for those with mental illness and addiction, and nursing education.