Three Couriers have just completed Frontier Nursing University’s (FNU) Courier Program from June 10 – August 11, 2018. Coming from as far as California, the Couriers served at clinics and were immersed in the culture of rural, underserved Appalachia during the two-month program.
Read more about each of the Couriers who answered the call to serve in these communities:
Dania Cervantes Ayala
Dania Cervantes Ayala is currently pursuing a Bachelor of Science in Nursing from College of Saint Mary in Omaha, Neb. with an expected graduation date of May 2019. Already with a Spanish minor and a Medical Interpreting Certificate from College of Saint Mary, Dania is the first in her family to graduate from high school and pursue higher education.
She was introduced to FNU’s Courier Program through her Nursing Public-Health Rotation, where she found a draw to underserved communities. Dania is passionate about public health, women’s health and pediatric health. After obtaining her RN, BSN, she plans to apply to a DNP program in order to become a Pediatric Primary and Acute Care Nurse Practitioner.
Dania’s role as a Courier included serving at the Hometown Clinic and Bluegrass Care Navigators. Throughout the summer, Dania implemented a drive for hygiene products, school supplies and food in Leslie County. The drive helped fill the gap and provide supplies to lower-middle class working families who need a little extra assistance.
Molly Craig is studying biology and psychology at Williams College in Williamstown, Mass. She was born in Mansfield, Pa. and attended Notre Dame High School in Elmira, N.Y. She is part of the swimming and diving team at Williams, and competed for Division III nationals in her freshman season. Additionally, she is a member of the Lehman Service club that conducts community outreach projects throughout the school year.
Molly plans to graduate pre-medical with a concentration in public health. When she is not swimming, Molly enjoys hiking, going to concerts, playing with her dog, and going on adventures with her friends.
As a Courier, Molly served at Kentucky Mountain Health Little Flower Clinic and volunteered with a summer youth program. With the program, Molly was able to use her swimming and lifeguarding skills while mentoring local kids.
James Rasmussen is a senior at Williams College in Williamstown, Mass., where he studies chemistry. Originally from California, he will graduate pre-medical at Williams and continue his studies in hopes of becoming a doctor. In his free time, James enjoys making music playlists and journaling.
James split time as a Courier between ARH Mary Breckinridge Hospital, Red Bird Mission and Clinic and the Well Coffee Shop. His roles included observing a week-old baby receive its check-up, designing a flyer for the Red Bird Health Fair, making phone calls to schedule appointments for hearing aids, and making specialty coffee drinks.
For his independent project, James met with Carol Graham Joseph, mayor of Hyden, Ky. and Joel Brashear of the Hyden Citizens Bank to organize and complete a mural for the town.
Summer is always an exciting time when the Couriers are at Wendover. Though they impacted communities here, this year’s Couriers will have many more opportunities to answer the call to service as each returns to their home colleges. Join us in thanking Dania, Molly and James for their outstanding efforts as Couriers this summer. Welcome to the FNU Courier family!
Students of all majors and backgrounds are encouraged to apply for the Courier program – no formal medical education required. Apply today!
At the heart of Frontier Nursing University is a talented and diverse community of students, alumni, faculty, staff, Couriers and preceptors. Spotlight blogs feature members of our FNU community who are focused on the mission of educating nurse-midwives and nurse practitioners to deliver quality health care to underserved and rural populations.
In 1928, Mary Breckinridge, founder of Frontier Nursing University established the Courier Program, recruiting young people to work in the Kentucky Mountains and learn about service to humanity. Couriers escorted guests safely through remote terrain, delivered medical supplies to remote outpost clinics, and helped nurse-midwives during home visits and births. Frontier has benefited tremendously from the 1,600 Couriers who have served since 1928.