Hometown: Naugatuck, Conn.
WCSU Degree: Bachelor of Science in Nursing
Internships: Worked on a project to raise diabetes awareness with the Hispanic Clinic at the Connecticut Mental Health Center in New Haven, Conn.
Activities: Works for the Department of Addiction and Mental Health Services for the State of Connecticut in Waterbury
Honors and Awards: Nursing honor society Sigma Theta Tau, high GPA
Madeline Diaz took advantage of a program called Nursing Pathways created to streamline studies from an associate degree in nursing through a bachelor's degree. "I received my associate in nursing from Naugatuck Valley Community College in 2003," she explains. "I attended school part time and worked part time for four years until I graduated."
Diaz then transferred her credits and completed her path at WestConn. "It was convenient and local for me," she says. "I decided to go back to school through the career mobility program offered by the State of Connecticut. The program allows an employee the opportunity to go to school and allows an employee time off for educational purposes after five years of state service. I took advantage of this opportunity and I enrolled at WCSU to pursue my BSN."
The Naugatuck, Conn., resident said she chose nursing because "there is a need for nurses and I wanted a career that would offer me lots of job opportunities."
Asked what she will remember most about her WestConn experience, Diaz says, "Being able to graduate this year.”
After graduation, Diaz will continue to work for the Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services for the State of Connecticut. "I enjoy working with this diverse group of individuals," she says. "I have been working in mental health as a psychiatric RN for seven years. "
Diaz’s advice to new students entering WCSU is: “The faculty at WCSU really make you put effort into your work, but it's because they want you to be the best you can be.” She also wants to share her favorite quote with incoming students: "If I can conceive it and believe it, I can achieve it. It's not my aptitude, but my attitude that will determine my altitude!"