Meet Our 2019 Foundation Scholars
The Massachusetts Senior Care Foundation is grateful for the generosity of our donors, whose contributions have helped 1,600 outstanding men and women achieve their professional and personal goals in long term care. For a complete list of the 2019 Foundation Scholars, please click here.
“Working in long term care taught me my real vocation and how to achieve my dream of becoming a nurse.”
Olanda Molina dreamed of becoming a nurse when she started her career in long term care 15 years ago working in the laundry department. Shortly after that, Olanda became a Certified Nursing Assistant (CNA) at Oak Knoll Health Care Center in Framingham. While balancing being a mother and her job as a CNA, Olanda exceled at MassBay Community College even achieving enrollment into the honor society. Her hard work has paid off with her acceptance into the Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) program at Assabet Vocational Technical School where she can achieve her career goal of becoming a nurse. “After my LPN program is complete, I would like to continue my education and finish my bachelor’s degree to become a Registered Nurse with emphasis in geriatrics which will let me provide the highest quality of care my patients deserve.”
"You have to invest your time and passion in caring for others in order to give the proper care they need."
-Christine Joy Villa
Christine Joy Villa's interest in a nursing career stemmed from her experience caring for her grandparents in the Philippines who faced serious health issues and dementia. For the last four years, Christine has been a Certified Nursing Assistant (CNA) at The Elmhurt HealthCare in Melrose. "I can say with great confidence that this is the job that I love. I wanted to do more with my career that is challenging and broaden my capability to make a greater impact in the lives of my residents."
Christine is a valued member of the caregiving team at The Elmhurst, where is recognized for her compassion, strong work ethic and reliability. Her supervisor notes that she always comes to work with a smile. Christine is currently pursuing an Associate Degree in Nursing at Bunker Hill Community College, earning high marks in her classes and eager to continue advancing her career in long term care.
“The residents have a special place in my heart and I am excited to grow and be there for them.”
Alexis Exama knew she wanted to be a nurse growing up. Her mother, a nurse at a local nursing home, would bring Alexis to visit with residents. To this day, Alexis still remembers her mother joking with the residents, and the sound of laughter and joy it would bring to the room. Two years ago, Alexis began working at Seacoast Nursing & Rehabilitation Center in Gloucester, first as a dietary aide and later as a Certified Nursing Assistant (CNA). “I look forward to coming to work, seeing my favorite residents, and having our daily conversations. I cherish the relationships I have developed with my residents.”
Alexis plans to work at Seacoast as a nurse after she graduates. She is currently pursuing a Bachelor of Science in Nursing at Curry College full-time.
“My smile is better than any medicine, and my residents appreciate that I am there for them.”
Jiaoyu Xiong began working as a Certified Nursing Assistant (CNA) over a year ago. During this time, she has realized a career in nursing was her passion. Immigrating from China five years ago, Jiaoyu has made tremendous strides in learning a new language, working part-time, obtaining an EMT certificate and graduating from Holyoke Community College with an Associate’s Degree. Her hard work is paying off, and Jiaoyu is now pursing her Bachelor’s Degree in Nursing at Elms College. "I truly want to help the residents in nursing homes live a happy and healthy life."
“I enjoy helping residents and giving their families a sense of peace knowing they are in good hands.”
Heather Reinhold is a charge nurse at Mount Greylock Extended Care Facility in Pittsfield. Heather recently completed her long-time goal of becoming a Registered Nurse (RN) and is now pursuing a baccalaureate degree in nursing at Elms College. “I want to educate the community about long term care and the great things we could do together for our residents.”
Heather is a valued member of the caregiving team at Mount Greylock, where is she is recognized for her core values of compassion, integrity, teamwork, excellence and stewardship. Her supervisor notes that she always has a smile on her face and treats everyone with dignity, respect, courtesy and kindness. Heather is earning high marks in her classes and eager to continue advancing her career to become a Director of Nursing in long term care.