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Nursing graduate and future leader award recipient

Nicole Lauffer, a December 2016 graduate of the UW-Eau Claire College of Nursing and Health Sciences, recently received the Wisconsin Nurses Association (WNA) Future Nursing Leader Award. The award recognizes nursing students who demonstrate outstanding leadership qualities during the educational process.

She was nominated by College of Nursing and Health Sciences associate professor, Norah Airth-Kindree, DNP, RN. In a letter of support, Debra Jansen, Ph.D., RN, associate dean of UW-Eau Claire nursing programs stated that Nicole, “embodies the ethics and values of nursing and exhibits exemplary leadership qualities. Rather than simply working to complete degree requirements, Ms. Lauffer has been challenging herself to grow as a nurse, as a leader, and as a scholar.”

As a student, Lauffer, of Colfax, participated in the Nursing Honors program, with a focus on surgical nursing and engaged in a faculty-student collaborative research project with Der-Fa Lu, Ph.D., RN.  As a leader, she volunteered as a Nurse Ambassador for the nursing program. Nurse Ambassadors meet with prospective students and guests to promote the discipline and discuss the nursing program.

She is also an active member of the Delta Phi chapter of the Sigma Theta Tau International Nursing Honor Society and Eau Claire Student Nurses Association.

“I have been blessed to have excellent professors who have mentored, guided, and challenged me to look at situations from multiple perspectives.” Nicole continued, “I desire to utilize the tools I have been provided to make a positive impact on the nursing profession and build upon the great foundation that I have built here at UW-Eau Claire.” Lauffer has accepted a RN position at Oakleaf Surgical Hospital and anticipates continuing her education to become a family nurse practitioner.

The WNA leadership award is presented twice a year to graduating students at their respective pinning ceremonies in the Spring or Fall semester. Nicole will receive a certificate and lapel pin during the College’s Convocation, Saturday, Dec. 17, at 11:30 a.m. in the Schofield Hall auditorium from Executive Director for WNA, Gina Dennik-Champion, MSN, RN, MSHA. Winners also receive a complimentary year of membership in the American Nurses Association and Wisconsin Nurses Association, along with a hand-picked mentor, and an appointment to a WNA council or committee of her choosing.

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