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Graduates receive DAISY Award

Two nursing students at Beaufort County Community College were celebrated during the nurse pinning ceremony in May with an award from the DAISY Foundation. Liliana Pacheco and Emanuel Romero Ruiz received the DAISY Award for Extraordinary Nursing Students for their delivery of clinical care in an outstanding and compassionate way to patients and their families during their time as nursing students. 

The DAISY Foundation was established in 1999 by members of the family of Patrick Barnes. The 33-year-old died of complications of an auto-immune disease. Like many families that experience loss, the Barnes family wanted to honor Patrick’s life. They decided the DAISY (Diseases Attacking the Immune System) Foundation would honor the extraordinary care, compassion and kindness Patrick received from his nurses. The family created the DAISY Award to honor nurses and a separate award for nursing students who make extraordinary differences in patients and families experiences in healthcare. 

Nursing professor Jolene Spencer presented the two students with a DAISY pin and the handmade Healer’s Touch Sculpture.  

During preceptorship, Liliana Pacheco cared for a patient with a stroke who had trouble communicating with others despite having a communication board. Pacheco was able to communicate with the frustrated patient and work with him to understand what he was trying to say.  

“After she cared for him, the staff commented that there was a huge difference in his attitude and that he trusted Liliana and was grateful for her efforts,” said Spencer.  

The second award recipient, Emanuel Romero Ruiz, always expresses the attitude of an exceptional nurse, according to Spencer.  

“There were so many moments in the hospital that I remember him going above and beyond with patient care,” she said. “Always willing to lend a helping hand, whether it was me asking, or another nurse or student on the floor needing help.” 

Romero always came into and left the day with a positive attitude, which brightened the attitude of everyone. He made an impact on patients’ days as well.  

“I know that if one of my family members were sick, I would be confident that they were receiving extraordinary care from Emanuel,” said Spencer.  

Recipients of the DAISY Award for Extraordinary Nursing Students had to be thoughtful and caring, keeping patients and families at the center of care, a true advocate for patients, families, and self.  They had to demonstrate professionalism, flexibility, and adaptability in clinical and classroom environments. They had to be committed to excellence in patient care, demonstrating proficiency in decision-making, kindness, compassion, and sincerity in practice. Lastly, they had to create a healthy work environment and strive to improve practice and patient care.