An IUP student was voted by classmates as most deserving to win the Indiana Lion’s Club scholarship.
Indiana Lion’s Club offers an annual award for graduating nursing students of $500, and Brooke Zawalnicki (senior, nursing) was this year’s winner.
Seniors are allowed to vote for the classmate that has the most compassion, respect, knowledge and good communication skills as well as able to remain calm under pressure and be detail-oriented in patient care delivery.
“I was hopeful that I would win this award because I knew how honored it would make me feel to be selected by my own classmates,” Zawalnicki said. “When I got notified about winning this award, I was completely shocked.
“I got a huge rush of excitement and felt as though my hard work was being noticed by others.”
Zawalnicki’s award will go towards her student loans with the plan to pay them off in two to three years.
Nursing majors require a commitment to the program as well as patience in understanding the material needed for patient care and health. Time and energy will be expended in this profession, and it can be a difficult decision to make when deciding if a nurse career is right.
“I chose nursing as my career path because I have always had a sense of empathy for others,” Zawalnicki said. “There was never a specific time that helped me determine my passion for nursing.
“Instead, it always just made sense to me that I was going to be a nurse because it was my calling.”
Zawalnicki did not have to apply for this scholarship; she earned the award through her dedication to her career and her work in class. She offers advice for those that may have trouble or have doubts about winning scholarships.
“I would suggest becoming more involved with your major and academic life,” Zawalnicki said. “This helps to build a stronger connection between you and your professors.
“Because of this rapport, you may feel more comfortable with asking professors or other students about scholarship opportunities that are available to you.”
The opportunity that the Indiana Lion’s Club provides for nursing students is one of 35-year-long-standing tradition.
According to e-clubhouse.org, the Indiana Lion’s Club is part of a larger organization that works to serve their communities through environmental care, feeding the hungry, helping seniors and disabled individuals.
The main goal of the Lion’s Club is to raise awareness of and aide in the fight against blindness. This includes distributing medicine, vision screenings and equipping hospitals and clinics.
Through this organization’s active Lion’s Clubs in these communities, it provided support for an IUP student with a promising career in nursing, who will then be able to give back to communities through her life’s commitment to helping people with this career choice.
“I would like to thank everyone who has helped me through my college career thus far,” Zawalnicki said.
“My family, friends, classmates and professors have all been so supportive during this journey, and I will forever be appreciative of all the guidance I have received.”