Legacy in Action | Regis Today Summer 2020Photo: Holly Redmond


Alumna’s legacy will positively impact countless lives


When scholarship donor Donald McCready met recipient Karla Aramayo-Lopez ’20 in February, he reached out to shake her hand. Aramayo-Lopez smiled and went in for a hug.

“This scholarship is such a blessing to me,” says Aramayo-Lopez, fighting back tears of joy. “I have prayed for something like this to come along.”

There is an overwhelming sense of gratitude from Aramayo-Lopez, a first-generation Regis undergraduate nursing student who was forced to take a leave of absence from Regis due to her financial circumstances. She admits that trying to juggle her full-time nursing course and clinical load while also working as a nursing tech—including overnight shifts—was impossible.

“Growing up, my family faced financial struggles,” says Aramayo-Lopez. “From a young age I was determined to pursue higher education, so when I had to take time off from Regis to work, I was worried I wouldn’t have the resources to go back and finish my nursing degree. It was a devastating thought.”

Carol M. Murphy Class of 1960Thanks to the Carol M. Murphy ’60 and Donald E. McCready Endowed Scholarship—a scholarship that McCready established in memory of his beloved life partner, Carol M. Murphy ’60—that’s not something that Aramayo-Lopez has to worry about anymore.

Murphy and McCready met in 2000 and shared a passion for world travel—visiting more than 20 countries together. And while they met long after Murphy’s days at Regis, McCready joined her on campus for her 50th Reunion in 2010. A self-proclaimed introvert, McCready admired Murphy’s ability to strike up a conversation with just about anyone. That skill was integral in Murphy’s success throughout her 50-year career as a social worker and psychotherapist.

“Carol was the best friend I ever had at MGH and I miss her immensely,” says Edel Kruger, a coworker at Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH) Charlestown HealthCare Center, where Murphy worked as a clinician. “She is unforgettable and anybody who met her smiles when I bring up her name.”

Another coworker at MGH, Deborah Wanzer, remembers Murphy’s “infectious laugh, strong sense of social justice, and gift for working with the underserved.”"This scholarship is such  a blessing to me. I have prayed for something like this to come along.” Karla Aramayo-Lopez ’20

This is a common theme as colleagues and friends remember Murphy’s unwavering commitment—to her patients, friends, family, and of course, to McCready.

Several months before Murphy passed away in June 2017, McCready shared his plan to endow a Regis scholarship in her name—a commitment he planned to make to the Now We Fly Campaign in her honor.

“Her one wish was that the scholarship go to a nursing student,” says McCready. “I always thought of Carol as a ‘mental health nurse’—she wanted to support students who would ultimately carry on that legacy of serving and helping others. My preference was to help a first-generation student and in Karla we got both.”

As it turns out, Murphy had quite a bit in common with Aramayo-Lopez. Both shared a love for traveling and talking to people. (Aramayo-Lopez’s “favorite part of nursing”—connecting with patients.) Most importantly, both shared a passion for bettering the lives of others.

“I’m so happy that Karla was chosen for the scholarship,” says McCready, who enlisted in the Navy after graduating from high school and then went on to attend the University of Michigan thanks to the GI Bill. “As a first-generation student myself, my college degree made a real difference in my life. I’m an advocate for providing higher education opportunities because that opportunity was given to me.”

McCready’s generous gift to the campaign means that Murphy’s legacy will live on at Regis for decades to come—supporting generations of students like Aramayo-Lopez in perpetuity.

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