Binghamton University President Harvey Stenger stopped by the Nursing Student Association's table during the University's Day at the Mall event in February 2019. He was welcomed by NSA members (from left) Kate Annesi, Emily Guida, Gabrielle Cornelious and Alyssa Vilda.

Binghamton University President Harvey Stenger stopped by the Nursing Student Association’s table during the University’s Day at the Mall event in February 2019. He was welcomed by NSA members (from left) Kate Annesi, Emily Guida, Gabrielle Cornelious and Alyssa Vilda.

The Decker College of Nursing and Health Sciences’ Nursing Student Association (NSA) is donating a total of $5,000 to a variety of local organizations in spring 2021.

Composed of undergraduate nursing students, the NSA provides mentorship for current and prospective students, as well as promotes professional development through job and internship sessions that educate developing nurses on career advancement.

“Earlier this semester, we realized that through our fundraising efforts we had accumulated quite a surplus budget and decided that we wanted to use that money to make an impact on the local Broome County community,” said Grace Schaefer, NSA community chair representative, in an email.

One of the NSA’s goals is to promote student involvement in the Binghamton area. Fundraising took place at local businesses such as Meadow Farms, Sugar Lips Ice Cream Shop and Java Joe’s Roasting Company. The association also participated in merchandise fundraisers of Decker College apparel. These fundraising events were spearheaded by Michael Colabelli and Nicole Sammartano, the NSA’s two financial chairs.

“Supporting both our students and the local community is so important, and hopefully someone’s life will be made easier because of NSA’s contribution,” said Alyssa Vilda, NSA president.

Some of NSA’s donations give back to Binghamton students. A Commencement gift will go to the Haley Anderson Memorial Fund, which will award a scholarship to an incoming nursing student. Additionally, a donation is being made to help senior nursing student Rebecca Koltun, who was in a skiing accident in March that resulted in a severe spinal injury.

The donations don’t stop there.

Many people in the Binghamton area suffer from food insecurity, so the NSA is giving money to both the Broome County Council of Churches Community Hunger Outreach Warehouse (CHOW) and Volunteers Improving Neighborhood Environments (VINES). CHOW is a local food bank that works to provide access to quality food and a gift from the NSA will help CHOW increase its supplies. Working with VINES, the NSA will provide some local families in need with boxes of fresh produce from local farms.

Recognizing how difficult COVID-19 restrictions have been on nursing homes, NSA is also working with local nursing homes where Decker students completed clinical rotations in the past to fund purchases for their recreational departments.

“I just think NSA has the ability to do a lot of good in the community to impact people’s lives at this time, even in small ways,” Vilda said.

Other organizations that will receive NSA donations are Mercy House, Mom’s House, the Lourdes Human Trafficking Task Force and the Mental Health Association of the Southern Tier. These organizations help community members, particularly those in vulnerable situations, get the help they need.

Finally, the NSA isn’t forgetting healthcare and frontline workers! The group is donating to the ICU/ER/COVID units at UHS and Ascension Lourdes hospitals, as well as the Coronavirus Response Fund for Nurses through Nurses House, Inc. These donations are being made to acknowledge that the pandemic isn’t over yet and in recognition and appreciation of the response registered nurses have made since the beginning of the pandemic.

Posted in: Campus NewsDecker

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