A Child's Life Is Saved. And a Nurse Is Born.
On a snowy day in 2005, then 10-year-old Danielle D'Agostino underwent brain surgery at Baystate Children's Hospital to remove a non-cancerous tumor the size of a lemon that she and her family had learned about only two days before.
When Danielle reflects on this scary time, what she remembers most is the love she felt from her Baystate nurses. "Whenever I had to do something hard — like receiving meds that burned or hurt — my nurses were there for me," she says. "They were so optimistic and caring."
Danielle remembers thinking, "I want to do this when I grow up." She filled scrapbooks with photos and articles about nursing as a career. In her junior year of college, Danielle volunteered at Baystate Children's to help young patients cope with their own challenging illnesses.
Now she's thrilled to be back at Baystate Children's Hospital, this time as a nursing student through Elms's accelerated second-degree nursing education program. Her ultimate goal — to join the Baystate Health Nurse Residency program and become a full-time nurse for Baystate Children's.
"I feel lucky to be in this hospital as a caregiver. As a student nurse, I see so much happiness here — even among children and families who are coping with serious illness," Danielle says. "My brain tumor could have taken me in many different directions. I'm so glad it led me to nursing, and I'm so grateful to everyone who supports Baystate Children's Hospital."
A gift in your will or through a beneficiary designation can help young patients like Danielle overcome illness to make a difference. To explore ways you can help, reach out to Kylie Johnson at 413-794-7789 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
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