Amanda Adams, RN, DNPc (Class of 2019)
Adams gave the below speech at the University at Buffalo School of Nursing's Annual Donor Scholar Reception in 2017.
I’d like to start tonight with an affirmation: “I face today with curiosity and an open heart, and I know the world is full of possibility.”
Tonight’s affirmation is about curiosity – the possibility to explore, grow, and learn. As a student, it is sometimes hard to lift our noses out of books – and from underneath the myriad of assignments. It can be difficult to remember the big picture and the scope of our future impact as doctorate-prepared NPs. We have so much going on that it’s easy to lose sight of our initial purpose for embarking on the very big adventure of advanced practice education.
This past summer, I was given the opportunity to be a part of something that went far beyond the sentences in a book and even further than translating science into practice. The Greece Interprofessional Education (IPE) experience changed everything about the way I see the world and how I think about health care, both at home and abroad. It would be hard to name all of the things I learned from the experience, as the impact on my skills as a nurse and future practitioner have grown tremendously in the process. But it was the [Syrian] refugees we treated in Greece – their sincerity, generosity and welcoming nature – that imparted the biggest life lesson. It caused a physical shift in me to appreciate the privilege and possibility we have here in our country, and to be grateful for all of the things I have been granted in this life.
The experience made me realize that my actions matter, that we can shift a positive change in the world and even shift a little bit of ourselves in the process. We have the privilege and possibility to make a difference as UB nursing graduates, and the donors in this room help make this experience a possibility. Not only do global missions affect how students see the world, it brings a bit of compassion and much needed care to people that might not otherwise have it.
From the day I stepped off the plane in Greece to the day I came back home and “back to reality,” I knew my life had forever changed; I knew that the life I have here is something to be cherished and my skills are something to be shared both domestically and abroad.
Tonight, I’d like to thank the donors here for making these experiences possible. I know I now can face the day with a humbled and open heart and, through your support, now other students may find the possibilities that lie just beyond our borders.