Bernice Boateng ’20
New York City Christmas Reception Speech

Good evening everyone, it is such a pleasure to join you all tonight. I’d like to extend my gratitude to both Peter and Eileen Langenus for allowing me to be a part of this event, and thank you all for the opportunity to share a few words with you. I also would like to thank my two sisters Abby and Faith for clearing time out of their busy schedules to join me today. My name is Bernice and I am currently nearing the tail end of my undergraduate career at Regis. My parents both immigrated to the United States from Ghana determined to make sure that my siblings and I live a successful life. As a first generation college student, I quickly learned that it was important for me to take advantage of every opportunity that came my way. Throughout my time on campus I have had countless opportunities to expand my knowledge, serve the underserved, and most importantly, have fun.

I remember touring college campuses in 2016 as a high school senior confused about what I wanted study in college. Little did I know, visiting Regis would help me discover that nursing was the career choice for me. After leaving my home in Connecticut to spend time on campus, I felt that the tight knit community that was deeply rooted in helping underserved communities was the best place for me to grow as an individual and pursue my nursing degree. (not to mention my mom also really loved the idea of me studying there).

I am proud to say that I was one of the first students in Regis College history to win a GNAC conference championship with the track and field team in 2018. I have had the opportunity to apply the skills I learned both in the classroom and in our simulation labs through clinical rotations at outstanding healthcare facilities. I was able to serve the women of Rosie’s Place, help expecting parents usher their newborns into the world at MetroWest Medical Center, and care for some critically ill children and their families at the number one pediatric hospital in country. I also had the opportunity to travel to California with the Center for Ministry and Service where I was exposed to the reality of poverty and homelessness in the urban inner city of Los Angeles. That trip left me inspired, and I will serve as a student leader in March 2020 as we travel to help restore the devastated environment and parks that are vital to our people in Puerto Rico after hurricane Maria.

The guidance from my professors along with the exceptional clinical experiences I have had at Regis has made it a little difficult for me to decide on my future plans. However, upon graduation I hope to begin my nursing journey in either a pediatric or critical care setting, further my career, and travel to provide care throughout the U.S. and beyond.

There is an African proverb I’m sure everybody has heard at some point, “it takes a village to raise a child.” Well, my village includes grandparents, aunts, uncles, cousins, siblings, professors, and friends but it also includes some people I have never met before. The village behind our Regis community and me, is you - the ones who have been so generous and have given bountifully to ensure that students like myself do not face barriers that hinder them from taking advantage of opportunities that come their way. When we achieve, we usually do so because others have helped. The S. Jeanne D’Arc O’Hare merit scholarship has helped to ease my financial burden so that I can focus on furthering my career, and growing as an individual so that I can serve the underserved. The additional aid I received in the name of Dr. Mary Jane England reminded me of the important role that powerful, diverse, and inspiring women have on the community, and has motivated me to carry out her mission in alignment with my own… and for all of this I am forever grateful.

Through the service I have been able to participate in, I learned that you can serve God by serving others, and I appreciate how generosity is your service. My parents always say to my sisters and me, “little drops of water make a mighty ocean.” Your support—whether big or small—contributes to the extraordinary students that transition from Regis to make an impact on their community and beyond. Thank you!