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New York Times Columnist and Author Theresa Brown, RN Speaks to High School Equivalency Students at LaGuardia Community College
Brown related her late-in-life career change to students’ pursuit of education
Photo caption: Author and New York Times columnist Theresa Brown, RN poses with Bridge Program students at LaGuardia Community College. Displayed on the walls are students’ class work that involved summarizing and analyzing excerpts from Brown’s books.
Long Island City, NY—November 17, 2015—Theresa Brown, a New York Times columnist and author, visited LaGuardia Community College on October 19 to share her personal journey with students in the Bridge to College and Careers Program (known as the Bridge Program), who are working towards a high school equivalency degree and beyond.
Brown, a registered nurse who lectures nationally on issues related to nursing, healthcare and end of life, discussed being inspired after having twins to go back to school to pursue a career change from a college English professor to a clinical nurse. She recounted personal struggles and professional challenges covered in her books, The Shift: One Nurse, Twelve Hours, FourPatients’ Lives and Critical Care: A New Nurse Faces Death, Life, and Everything in Between.
For Bridge Program students, who had read excerpts from her books and did summaries and analyses of the readings, meeting the author in person and having her describe to them firsthand some of her experiences was exciting.
“Having Theresa Brown, a nationally known and respected author and nurse, come to speak with our students was truly inspirational for them,” said Rachel Oppenheimer, Bridge Program Manager. “It was a unique opportunity for them to not only interact with the person behind their in-class readings, but to see themselves in her journey—both her successes and challenges. Given that the majority of Bridge Program students are in the health or science track and aspire to healthcare careers, it is so important for them to meet inspiring people like Theresa, who are where they want to be.”
“It was great knowing that at any age you can still do more,” said one student. “You can always decide what you want to be.”
Students had an opportunity to ask Brown questions about her experiences and challenges faced. The author also reviewed students’ classwork related to her books, which was displayed on posters in the room, and autographed their copies of her books.
Photo caption: Theresa Brown, RN signs copies of her books for Bridge Program students at LaGuardia Community College. • • • •
About the Bridge Program at LaGuardia CommunityCollege
The Bridge to College and Careers Program at LaGuardia Community College provides high school equivalency preparation that incorporates business, healthcare or science content. Known as “contextualized” instruction, the program helps students build basic academic skills while preparing them for post-secondary education, training or a career in one of these three areas, chosen by each student based upon their personal interests and professional goals.
Contextualized instruction, an innovative curriculum model, was developed and implemented at LaGuardia in 2006, and is now replicated in more than 17 states nationwide.
Compared to students in traditional high school equivalency programs, Bridge students are significantly more likely to stay in class, twice as likely to earn a high school equivalency credential, and three times as likely to enroll in college, according to a 2013 study of Bridge Program outcomes conducted by MRDC, a not-for-profit education and social policy research organization. ####