Legacies Worth Honoring

Alumnae remember peers with memorial scholarship fund.

When two beloved Frances Payne Bolton School of Nursing graduates—Laura J. Nosek, PhD, RN (NUR ‘61, ‘81; GRS ‘86, nursing) and Ann Farmer (NUR ‘63, ‘81)—died within six months of each other, their fellow alumni began searching for a way to honor their legacies.

Karen Hogan, DNP, RN (NUR ‘83), president-elect of the School of Nursing’s Alumni Association Board, and Paula Forsythe, RN (NUR ‘64, ‘82), the board’s operations director, wanted to create something that would have a lasting impact on the school while paying tribute to all alumni who have passed.

Thus, the idea for the Frances Payne Bolton School of Nursing Alumni Memorial Scholarship Fund was conceived.

Recently, Forefront asked these two alumni leaders to share why this fund is meaningful to them.

Q: What inspired you to establish this memorial fund?

Hogan: These [alumni] are the people who fed me professionally, who trained me to be a thinker and to treat patients holistically. When my mentor, Laura Nosek, died last year, I decided we needed a way to remember their names and to recognize their contributions to nursing.

Forsythe: In creating this fund, we pay tribute to the alumni who have preceded us while also empowering future generations of nurses. All of our alumni, including Laura and Ann, leave legacies worth honoring.


Q: Why is it important for alumni to stay involved with CWRU?

Hogan: With the current state of the nursing profession, we have to retain nurses, and that starts at [CWRU]. Together we can invest in the next generation—not only with scholarship support, but by mentoring students and new graduates. I am who I am today because of my alma mater, in more ways than one.

Forsythe: My mentors at the nursing school taught me to think for myself and problem solve. By modeling leadership, they promoted a sense of confidence that has allowed me to take risks and make positive changes. Those lessons instilled an appreciation for learning and engendered a desire to give back to the school that has done so much for all of us.

There’s a quote from author John Lancaster Spalding: “That the better self shall prevail and each generation introduce its successor to a higher plane of life.” That’s why I stay involved—so each generation can have an easier road and take the profession even further.

This interview has been edited for clarity and length.

If you are interested in contributing to this fund or have a name to add to our alumni memorial list, please contact Sara Schoonmaker, assistant director of special giving and stewardship, at 216.368.4416 or sara.schoonmaker@case.edu.

This article appears in the Fall/Winter 2022 issue of Forefront Magazine.