Lawrence S. Bloomberg Faculty of Nursing

Navi Mental Health Wayfinder

Notes of Support for Students

Thank you, alumni

We reached out to our alumni community to collect words of comfort and wisdom for our students during this uncertain time. Our alumni rose to the occasion reminding our students that the Bloomberg Nursing community is here for them.  

Greetings, and take heart! I write as a 5T9 graduate who is ever
thankful for my nursing education and experience, which you will
find will be the scientific and humanistic foundation of whatever
your call is: clinical nursing, education, research, further studies
and a diversity of opportunities to find a niche in a broad range of fields.
You have been chosen to be part of a University ranked globally
as stellar and a Faculty of Nursing that stands in the top
ten of nursing schools around the world. Yes, you have committed
to a steep learning trajectory: you will be forged through this viral
crucible, and you will forge friendships for a lifetime.
Always a joy for me to return and see how nursing has evolved: our
class enjoyed our 60th reunion last year! So be proud, do not worry
about tomorrow: today has enough challenges. Trust in yourselves:
you are there for a good reason as you continue to grow and find
deep meaning in your lives. Again, take heart, and carpe diem.

Judith Allison, BScN 1959

As a Bloomberg alumnus I wanted to reach out to you to let you know how valuable you all are as the future of nursing faces challenges it has never faced before.
The health of the public has never been as important as it is now.
Please know how valuable your skills and learning are going to be for the future well being of peoples worldwide.
These are difficult and challenging times – exactly the reason you have chosen this profession and the reason you need to keep positive and show leadership.
Now more than ever the world needs your commitment.
Thank you for choosing nursing. Thank you for being you!

Sandra Comisarow, Certificate in Public Health Nursing 1965

What unprecedented times in our world, which bring unique challenges, anxieties and opportunities for you in your nursing journey.
As I sit here on the west coast of Canada and reflect on 40 years of a career in nursing and health services following my graduation from UofT, I am grateful for the remarkable opportunities and experiences as nurse in various facets of health services.
Watching what is currently unfolding is surreal in many ways, but in particular, is seeing how all facets of health care are working together. I am proud of how our governments at all levels, business, academics/scientists, and front line providers are stepping forward with courage to support individuals, families, communities in addressing the significant impacts of this pandemic.
What a unique time in history for you as you embark on a nursing career, which brings significant anxieties but also opportunities.
May you:
• be supported in the continuation of your nursing education and learning,
• contribute your energies and leadership where you have a passion,
• experience strong teamwork,
• have the appropriate supports/tools/resources (and PPE!) in your respective health services settings,
• know you are making a difference, and
• feel acknowledged and thanked for your contributions as a nurse/health care provider. (It’s wonderful to see the significant and creative outpouring of gratitude to health providers!!)

Cathy Copeman-Stewart, BScN 1980

We all face unique challenges during this time, but you are in a good place at UofT. It might not feel like it right now, but you can watch, learn and maybe even participate in new and unique ways. Build your network both personally and professionally, get involved in the RNAO they are a force!
I’m so very lucky to have a network of support from my fellow UofT classmates. Your friends now will stay with you and be your support in the coming years, when we will undoubtedly face a new global health challenge.
Next weekend I was going to visit my very good nursing school friend in Calgary and her children, and in the summer I was going going to do a road trip to Edmonton to see another friend. These were my two study buddies in nursing school. There is lots to look forward to, despite all the uncertainty.

Kambria Ernst, BScN 2006

I want to let students know that all of this is temporary. I know you must be feeling scared, anxious, angry, and fearful just to name a few. It’s okay to feel whatever it is you’re feeling. But I also, want you to know that you aren’t alone. Sure, graduation is delayed/clinical placements are cancelled/other future commitments. Those things are on hold for now but they will resume again!
I encourage all of you, to utilize those stress coping strategies, you have developed throughout your nursing school experience so far. Take this as another learning experience, applicable to your day to day lives. Get back into hobbies (safe ones of course), or start new ones, got that project you were working on before nursing school? Why not get back into it? Self-care, Self-care, SELF-CARE not only does this apply to healthcare professionals, but to everyone! including students. I’ve learned this the hard way, please do make time for it. It’s important to recharge physically but mentally as well.
We are fortunate enough to be able to have instructors/professors who take the time to listen to alumni reaching out. It’s hard out here but feel free to reach out to your classmates, mentors, teachers/professors. We will get through this. I hope all of you and your families are safe, and well taken care of.

Loyda Escobar, BSc 2015, BScN 2019

Hello beautiful Bloomberg Nursing students from an alum in Philadelphia PA, USA!!
Yes, we are all in an unprecedented, historical moment at this time. You, future healthcare workers are seeing how essential your profession is for the state of mankind. I hope you are noticing that you- nurses, are loved, respected and admired by society. Especially if one becomes a Youtube sensation like the “Dancing Jefferson Nurses”!! Whooo Hoo, you know we nurses all have hidden talents beyond our profession!!
I hope you feel resolved, encouraged, and inspired that your dedication, long hours of studying, and ability to assimilate to digital learning to become part of our profession, means valuing our most precious gift- Life.
Stay healthy, positive, hopeful and always care. We need you.

Ruth Kipka-Lemole, BScN 1996

Hi there! My name is Kevin, and I’m an alumnus of Bloomberg. I don’t really know what to say during this crazy situation we find ourselves in. I am sorry that your education has been impacted by the pandemic, and for the added stresses that have been added to your plate. Nursing school is stressful enough on its own! I don’t have any advice to offer, since I’m figuring things out one day at a time as well. But I do know this: the workforce is incredibly stressed and being pushed to the limits right now. You will be a breath of fresh air when you join us as nurses, and I look forward to the experiences that you have accrued as nursing students during this time being contributed to the workplace.This won’t last forever, and we will get through it together. One small step at a time. Keep your chin up. The world needs you. Take care of yourselves and each other.
Kevin Talbott, BScN 2016

I’ve been a nurse for 30 years, the last 15years as a Nurse Practitioner. I worked through SARS and now COVID-19. It’s no secret that these are very challenging times for everyone. Nurses and all healthcare workers are being pushed to their physical and emotional and at times, spiritual limits.
Take pride in the profession, in being part of such an essential role. We need your skills, knowledge and spirit more than ever. We will get through this, we are nurses and we are incredibly adaptable. When the worst of this pandemic passes- we will need well trained nurses more than ever. Along with the financial fallout their will be numerous social, emotional, and mental health issues. Casualties that nurses are experts at managing.
So stay focused, be strong and innovative. Out of crisis comes opportunity for new processes and ways of thinking, and doing. You are the next generation of nurses and we’re relying on you to keep the profession evolving.
Stay safe and healthy.

Roseanne VanHoof, MN 2013

You are an amazing group of nursing students. I am a retired nurse and this is the first time in my life to experience a pandemic. While I stay “safe” at home, being a senior, you are out there helping as many people as you can. This will be, I hope, a time in your history that never gets repeated. You will tell your children and grandchildren about the CoVid 19 crisis when your studies were interrupted, you learned online, and you put yourselves out there to help others.
At this moment in time, I honour you all for how each one of you is adjusting and coping and hoping for an end to this pandemic. You are resilient, you are nurses, you can do this.
May God bless all your efforts.

Pat Yuill, BScN 1966

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