Dignity and respect in nursing

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Remember that old saying “is there a doctor is the house?” On June 26 at St. James AME Church the house wasn’t full of doctors, it was full of nurses. The Association of Pittsburgh Black Nurses held their second annual Evelyn Paige Parker Scholarship Luncheon.

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NURSES IN ACTION—Dawndra Jones, RN, mistress of ceremonies; Doretta Lemon Fallen, RN, luncheon chair; Candi Castleberry-Singleton, keynote speaker; and Claudia Kregg-Byers, RN.

Parker was a trailblazer, in the ‘40s. She was refused an education in nursing in Pittsburgh but that didn’t stop her from becoming a nurse. Evelyn Paige enrolled in the all-Black Mercy-Douglass Hospital School for Nurses in Philadelphia. Parker came back to her home of Pittsburgh and served a long and full life of service, teaching and mentorship. When she passed last year the luncheon was renamed in her honor.

Over a hundred ladies and gents enjoyed a tasty lunch catered by Quik-It Chicken, the smooth vocals of Charles Timbers Jr., RN. Candi Castleberry-Singleton, chief inclusion and diversity officer for UPMC, delivered a fantastic keynote speech on dignity and respect. The theme for the afternoon was dignity and respect in nursing.

Castleberry-Singleton said in 2010 the biggest challenge is dignity and respect across generations. People have to find a common ground and demonstrate mutual respect.

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SCHOLARSHIP RECIPIENT—Tasha Turner with Luevonue Lincoln, Ph.D, RN.

A crowd favorite, Atiya Abdelmakik, RN, performed her flawless monologue about accomplished Black women.

And there were many accomplished women who applied for the APBN scholarship. Each year APBN presents a scholarship to a deserving nursing student, this year Tasha Turner was the recipient of $1,000 from APBN. Turner says she considers herself a non-traditional student. She is married with four children and two step children.

APBN membership consists of RNs, LPNs and student nurses. Their mission is to reduce health disparities among African-Americans and other minorities in the greater Pittsburgh area through education and awareness and to support the nursing profession through mentorship and interdisciplinary collaboration with other medical and health promotion organizations.

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