While writing her recent doctoral dissertation on the South Orange campus, Linda D'Antonio, D.N.P. '19, clinical instructor in the College of Nursing, would pause on her way home each night to take a picture of Bethany Hall's construction progress. After the crown was put on, D'Antonio compiled the pictures to show the progress of SHU's newest addition.
Dr. D'Antonio has witnessed change at Seton Hall and the development of a generation of nurses. Soon after joining the faculty of the School of Nursing in 1994, she took on more and more courses until she became a full-time instructor. Teaching, D'Antonio says, is all about "passing the torch" to the next generation of nursing professionals. At the recent College of Nursing pinning ceremony at the Cathedral Basilica of the Sacred Heart in Newark, D'Antonio had the special task of pinning each graduating senior. D'Antonio told each student she pinned, "You have the tools. Now go do great things."
Teaching at SHU for 20 years has given D'Antonio insight into SHU's unique approach to training nurses. Seton Hall, D'Antonio says, trains students to be "global servants." Some nursing programs train students to only focus on the tasks at hand, D'Antonio explains. Seton Hall, however, trains its nurses to "embrace the whole person" by considering not only the patient's medical needs, but also the needs of the patient's family and friends.
Seton Hall recently honored D'Antonio and a fellow Nursing colleague, Leah Rowbotham, at the Golden Pirates reunion in Bethany Hall. D'Antonio said the recognition was a "prestigious honor." For D'Antonio, the Golden Pirates reunion was full of symbolism because of her connection to Mother Seton. Years ago, a colleague at the College of Nursing fell seriously ill. On her way to visit her colleague, D'Antonio grabbed a small statue of Mother Seton. Her colleague, D'Antonio explains, was close to death. But, D'Antonio, says, "Mother Seton wrapped us in her cape" and provided protection and safety. To this day, D'Antonio and her colleagues continue to feel a special connection to Mother Seton.
50 years after earning her bachelor's degree in nursing from Seton Hall, retirement is far from D'Antonio's mind. "I can't retire," D'Antonio says. "I have too much energy!" She recently completed her Doctor of Nursing Practice degree from the College of Nursing, pursuing one of nursing's highest academic degrees purely because she didn't want to "be without a purpose." D'Antonio isn't sure what's next for her, but she feels God will guide her next steps. "I always considered myself a cork in God's ocean," D'Antonio says. "He'll take me wherever He wants me to be."
D'Antonio wrote a special prayer for nursing students that she hopes will continue her legacy:
I am a seedling in the greenhouse named Seton Hall.
I see other seedlings in other greenhouses, but the nurturing environment and warmth of our fertilizer, of knowledge, wisdom and confidence will allow me to grow.
I see the caretakers of this greenhouse allowing me to bask in the light and warmth of the environment, never smothering me, yet giving me the key nutrients I need to grow strong and tall.
I will have a strong foundation!
It is harvest day and here I stand, wondering how my flowering bloom will be, as I stand with the other seedlings from the adjacent greenhouses. I am taller, my roots are deeper, and my growth potential immeasurable!
I AM A PIRATE…
I join the vast garden of Seton Hall University nursing alumni who make our special garden unique.
We are taller, and our blooms more radiant because our roots are deeper, having been nurtured with knowledge, experience and love!
Categories: Health and Medicine