Members of College of Western Idaho’s (CWI) Student Nurses Association (SNA) have been busy this semester giving back to the community by volunteering their time and talents. The Association, dedicated to fostering the professional development of Nursing students, began fall semester with 16 members. There are now nearly 40 members—all Nursing students at the College.
“Being active in SNA means being active in our community and college, allowing us to cultivate a heart for nursing,” SNA President, Mackenzie Bassett said. “Compassion cannot be taught by reading a textbook. It is gained by getting out in the community, taking in different cultures, and finding passion in helping others—and that is what we intend to do!”
In partnership with American Red Cross, SNA hosted a highly successful blood drive at the Nampa Campus Academic Building on Nov. 7. “We had more donors than spots available and ended up collecting 23 liters of blood,” said Bassett. “We are so proud of our CWI student body for their donations and willingness to give.”
Additional community outreach has included volunteering at first-aid booths during St. Luke’s annual FitOne race, leading a food drive for cystic fibrosis patients, handing care packages out to a local homeless community, participating in Rake-Up Meridian, and taking part in the Saint Alphonsus Festival of Trees and Neonatal Intensive Care Unit Harvest Party. Members have also volunteered at Amen Clinic of Boise and plan to sponsor a family for Christmas.
New this year, SNA plans to engage in volunteer opportunities outside of the area including providing care to fellow Americans as part of a Remote Area Medical mobile medical clinic and attending the National SNA Convention. The Convention, held in Salt Lake City, Utah, April 3-7, will provide opportunities for SNA to participate in competitions, seminar, and licensure exam reviews.
“These two events require us to travel, thus requiring us to fundraise,” said Bassett. “We have already hosted four fundraisers and have six others planned throughout the remainder of the school year.”
When asked why they are setting their goals so high and doing so much, Bassett emphasized the importance of learning the skills necessary to be a nurse both in and out of the classroom.