Alumni Spotlight – Alwilda Scholler-Jaquish
In 1960, the class motto for the Burge Hospital School of Nursing was “Have pin will travel”. I have lived this motto throughout the course of the nearly 60 years I have spent in the nursing field. Nursing has taken me across the country more than once, both vocationally and as I completed my studies. I went from completing my Master’s at UCLA in Los Angeles to working in a hospital in Delaware, before landing in Baltimore, Maryland to help to establish a residential hospice program.
While that was in development, I worked in an acute care hospital as a part-time instructor at the University of Maryland, where I helped establish a walk-in health care program for the homeless. I changed positions within the college as programs were phased in and out and I completed my graduate studies and started my doctoral studies. I published several articles over that time, as well as multiple chapters in Community Health Nursing textbooks, and began writing for Psychiatric Mental Health Nursing textbooks.
While I was completing my doctoral program, my husband retired, and I found work as an Associate Professor at Texas Tech University School of Nursing. I continued to teach community health nursing and nursing management and had my first experience with online courses. After my husband died, I accepted a position as an Associate Professor at the University of Nevada at Reno. During my doctoral studies, I began working with a colleague on the publication of a book based on phenomenological research, which went on to receive a national award. I eventually moved back to Baltimore with retirement on the horizon.
Seeking a part-time teaching position, I was hired as an Associate Professor at the Graduate and Professional Studies Nursing Program at Stevenson University, an online program. After a year, I was offered a full-time position. While my strength was community health nursing education, I was hired to teach Informatics, something I had to learn on-the-job. I spent ten years at Stevenson University, helping develop and coordinate programs before I retired a second time. But for me, retirement doesn’t take.
Today, I am an adjunct professor for Stevenson University Online, teaching two courses a semester. In 2018, I received the Outstanding Part-Time Faculty award. I love student interaction and learn something new almost every day. In the nearly 60 years of nursing, I have encountered many changes and embraced most of them while adapting to others. I have embraced lifelong learning.