FRAMINGHAM – MassBay Community College Associate of Science Nursing student Elizabeth Halliday, has been selected as MassBay’s representative for the Department of Higher Educations “29 Who Shine” award.
In May 2011, the Massachusetts Department of Higher Education launched “29 Who Shine,” a commencement season awards program to recognize 29 outstanding student graduates from the Commonwealth’s public higher education system.
Each honoree from a community college, state university or University of Massachusetts campus is nominated by a faculty or staff member, or by a university awards committee.
Halliday and the other 28 students were recognized by Massachsuetts Governor Charlie Baker at an awards ceremony and reception at the Massachusetts State House on Friday, May 5.
“We congratulate the honorees recognized today for their academic accomplishments and look forward to their continued contributions to the Commonwealth,” said Governor Baker, in a statement. “The 29 Who Shine awards are an important recognition of the impressive work Massachusetts’ college students do to make the Commonwealth’s workforce the best in the country.”
“The 29 Who Shine honorees are exceptional student leaders who saw a way to improve something and acted on it, and for that we are grateful,” said Education Secretary James Peyser. “They are a credit to the colleges and universities they attend. We are proud of their contributions to their communities and the Commonwealth.”
“Elizabeth has made good on Massachusetts taxpayers’ investment in her education,” said Carlos E. Santiago, Commissioner of Higher Education. “Every year the 29 Who Shine remind us that our public college and university graduates represent the future of the Commonwealth. They are here to learn, here to stay, and it is incredibly inspiring to see how each honoree is contributing to our common good.”
Halliday, who lives in Medfiield, had always been interested in entering the healthcare field and began her college career as a pharmacy student.
She quickly learned that she was at her best while caring for others and becoming a nurse was her calling.
While attending MassBay as a nursing student, she has helped lead and mobilize her fellow nursing students in service activities for the college and local community and has served as a role model and mentor for other incoming nursing students.
She is the current President of the MassBay Nursing Club, helping rejuvenate and transform the student members into a true service-oriented group. She has lead her group to hold Red Cross blood drives on campus, clothing drives for the Epilepsy Foundation and coordinated volunteers for service events that benefit families and young children in the MetroWest area.
After graduation this May, she plans on becoming a Registered Nurse and pursing her Bachelor of Science degree in Nursing to eventually become a nursing educator and mentor future nursing students.
“Liz Halliday truly embodies the best of MassBay Community College,” said MassBay President Dr. David Podell. “Her passion for nursing stems from a deep commitment to improving the lives of others, and our community is honored that Liz is one of this year’s 29 Who Shine.”
“Liz is always looking for ways to improve herself, the college, the community, and the nursing profession,” said MassBay Nursing Professor Joyce Brazee. “Liz approaches all challenges with a smile and dedication like no other. She demonstrates strong leadership skills, always acts as a team player, has the ability to problem solve, and most importantly, to think critically.”
“I am honored to be recognized as 29 Who Shine, but this award is because Professor Joyce Brazee is a superwoman,” said Halliday. “She inspires me every day to be a better person. I don’t know that I could have been the kind of student I am without her. She teaches in a way that makes everything come alive and stick with you. You never feel uncomfortable to ask questions. It’s because of her that I realized that I not only want to become a nurse, but become a nurse educator, so I can give back to others who may someday want to become nurses.”
Students selected for the “29 Who Shine” award must meet the following criteria;
- Student graduate shows exceptional promise as a future leader in civic affairs or in business or professional activing in Massachusetts, having already demonstrated an ability to contribute to the civic and economic wellbeing of the Commonwealth.
- Pursue a career track or interest for which there is a demonstrated need in the Commonwealth, such as a high-demand STEM-related career (health care, life sciences, information technology), or a start-up business that will produce jobs, or a community service role to better the lives of fellow Massachusetts citizens (such as teaching, working in a social service agency, or community organization, etc.).
- Massachusetts resident who plans to continue living and working in the state upon graduation. A student who plans to live in Massachusetts after furthering his or her education, either in or out of state, would also qualify.
- Complete his/her degree or certificate requirements at the Massachusetts community college, state university or UMass campus within the academic year.