Applying to Penn Nursing? Read this first.

By Monica Muzzi, Nu’93

I’m in the process of interviewing applicants for Penn Nursing and, invariably, the question of my own experience at Penn Nursing is raised. In reply, I always use one word: tough. And it was. The curriculum was rigorous and the clinicals were long. By junior year, we were going into the hospital twice a week from 7 am to 3 pm, every college student’s nightmare. Most of my roommates’ classes didn’t start until 10:30 and they had, maybe, 2 classes a day. At times, when I was tired from studying the previous night, but had to be to the hospital for clinicals early the next morning, and expected to answer questions intelligently, I wondered why I was choosing this profession. I would prepare extensively for these clinicals, not wanting to embarrass myself or disappoint my preceptor or professor only to have some question my choice to ‘limit myself’ to nursing. I can’t count the number of times I was asked, “you seem so smart, why not go on to become a doctor,” as if nursing is just a segue or pause before moving onto medical school and not its own unique field. Also, as you can imagine, the early morning clinicals curbed or precluded some fun, well, ‘college experiences’ the night before. I think the first medication that I learned about in nursing school was Pepto Bismol.  But I made it through and even went back for my Master’s.

Monica Muzzi Penn Nursing #93tothe25th

Photo from The Compass shows Monica Muzzi as a nursing student.

Now, twenty years later, I am still a nurse (I did not ‘go on’ to become a doctor). I’ve worked in clinical care, as a manager, an educator and am an entrepreneur. In every job, I’m asked where I get my drive, grit, and passion for patient care and nursing education. And, I think back to the tough times at Penn, that instilled resilience in us. I greatly appreciate the caliber of the faculty and staff and how they taught us, through their own actions, that we could accomplish anything. Meeting and exceeding potential was expected. Empowering others (both patients and colleagues) wasn’t just suggested, it was implied as a necessary component of a nurse leader. And we are all leaders in our own way, no matter our path, no matter our position or earnings. Telling an infertility patient that she is pregnant is as meaningful and inspiring to me now as it was 20 years ago. If I had to pick five words to describe the essence of me, who I am, what I believe in, one of these words would be Nurse. Without a doubt or hesitation. This I also relate to the high school applicants. How many can say the same? #grateful.

Penn Nursing 1993 graduates

Angela Sabatino Collingwood, Truc Vo and Monica Muzzi, all Nursing ’93, line up for Penn Commencement in May 1993

Penn Class of 1993 25th Reunion Countdown

The weekend of December 15 – 16, 2017, marked 21 weeks until the 25th Reunion of the Penn Class of 1993 (May 11 – 14, 2018)! Meet us at the Button!

Join us we count down the weeks to our reunion #93tothe25th:

  • Do you have old photos or mementos from our time at Penn? Photos of Spring Fling? Football at Franklin Field? Classes at DRL? We are taking a trip down memory lane and would love for you to share your memories with our class in a future post. Please email us!
  • Follow us on Twitter, Tumblr, and Instagram.
  • Classmates are invited to join our Facebook and LinkedIn groups.
  • Donate to The Penn Fund in honor of our reunion! We want to break the 25th reunion participation giving record and every gift matters!

Book Your Hotel Room for Alumni Weekend NOW!

The Marriott Downtown (where we had a Penn 1993 and a Penn Alumni room block) is sold out for Alumni Weekend. There are alternative hotels near by. We recommend booking ASAP! Please see our class website for additional details.

Penn Class of 1993 25th Reunion #93tothe25th


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Filed under 25th Reunion, Class of 1993, Penn Nursing

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