Every year, Red River College awards up to four Lieutenant Governor’s Medal awards to graduating students who excel in academic and technical achievement, involvement in College and/or community activities, and good character. This year, the nursing department is proud to share that January 2020 graduate, Michelle Queau was one of the selected winners for this prestigious award.
Michelle entered the nursing program in the fall of 2016 as a mature student seeking a second career as a registered nurse. Previously Michelle spent 11 years as a laboratory technician with CancerCare Manitoba and contributed to numerous academic research projects. Michelle’s past experience was a natural fit for the nursing program and she selflessly shared her past experience and skills navigating the health care world with her fellow students and faculty members. She was also frequently called upon by faculty to share her student experiences and readily sought opportunities to be involved in nursing program committees and projects.
Michelle’s outstanding accomplishments, which contributed to her successful award application include:
• Spending up to 15 hours a week mentoring, tutoring, and encouraging her fellow classmates in their academic endeavours, encouraging them to succeed in their courses and at clinical practice.
• Being invited to be a member of the Nursing Program Advisory Committee, an important committee that provides feedback to nursing program leadership about the effectiveness and lived experience of the nursing program and its relationship with the many health care facilities that support the program and hire nursing graduates.
• Participating in the Canadian Nursing Student Association Conference, winning best presentation at the Nursing Research and Innovation Day in 2019, and participating as a student panelist at the Nursing Faculty Teaching Excellence Day in 2019.
• Participating as a student representative on the Provincial Nursing Advisory Task Force (PNATF) in May 2019 and as a committee member (new graduate representative) on the Shared Health Nursing Strategy Steering Committee since Dec 2019.
• Becoming a member of a nursing faculty research team exploring nursing student retention (led by nursing faculty member Kim Mitchell). Michelle was originally hired as a research assistant on this project but upon her completion of the nursing program elected to stay a member of the research team contributing her insights to the analysis and dissemination of this work.
• Becoming a member of the Association of Registered Nurses of Manitoba (ARNM) and volunteering as an organizing committee member for the Emerging Leaders Network. The ELN is a unique space that is built for nursing students, new graduates, and early career nurses where they can connect, support, and inspire one another as they develop professionally.
Michelle’s involvement in the above activities ensures that she will be an outstanding contributor to the nursing profession as she begins her new career as a registered nurse working full time on 5A cardiology at St. Boniface Hospital. Her research involvement gives her valuable experience toward any future aspirations she may have to continue her academic pursuits. Michelle is a very deserving winner of this award. To quote from her award application, “My core values include a commitment to lifelong learning and nursing excellence, as I value research, innovation, and evidence-based practice to promote dignity and respect to all individuals. The RRC nursing education has been such a rewarding experience as I have grown personally, professionally, and gained leadership skills. I look forward to an exciting nursing career filled with possibilities.”
Post written by Kim Mitchell – Coordinator, Research, Scholarship and Quality Improvement
Photos provided by Michelle Queau – RN BN