...........................



"The nursing program at The College of New Rochelle has been the most demanding but also the most enjoyable of the academic pursuits I have had. I feel I have acquired a new family and with graduation approaching I have mixed feelings. I am excited but also sad knowing that my daily life will not be the same after CNR. There is a magic here at The College of New Rochelle that is seldom found elsewhere."

Valerie Sirani
School of Nursing
Class of 2008
The College of New Rochelle


Where are you from, Valerie? 

I grew up in Rye, New York where I currently reside. I attended the City of Rye Public Schools and graduated from Rye High School in 1980.


Tell us something about your family?

I am an only child with extremely supportive parents and close cousins who I consider more as siblings. My parents are the foundation of who I am. They are the essence of what one would think when you define the word “kindness.”  


You are studying nursing. Tell us about that school
at The College of New Rochelle.

The nursing program at The College of New Rochelle has been the most demanding but also the most enjoyable of the academic pursuits I have had. I feel I have acquired a new family and with graduation approaching I have mixed feelings. I am excited but also sad knowing that my daily life will not be the same after CNR. There is a magic here at The College of New Rochelle that is seldom found elsewhere.

When I graduate and leave, I will miss seeing Dean Mary Alice Donius striving for continuous quality and integrity not only within the curriculum but also in the faculty, staff, and students. I will miss seeing Dr. Geraldine Valencia-Go, Associate Professor, scurrying about campus early in the morning and the freshman class stressing out because of the size of her syllabus. I will miss Assistant Dean Russell Hullstrung’s calming nature that just makes you take a deep breath because, “everything will be alright.”  I will also miss watching Dr. Anne Frost, Associate Professor, as she analyzes a thought and the way she tilts her head. I will miss Associate Professor, Lynda Shand’s ability to present herself and her natural gift to promote a sense of belonging.

I will miss Dr. Connie Vance and her ability to drive people to think on another intellectual level. And, of course, I will miss Colleen Bimbo’s sense of humor, smile and her ability to know every student.


Before enrolling at CNR where did you study?

Let’s say, I am a “third degree student” in the second-degree program.

I have a BA from New York University, 1985. I also have a MS from Long Island University School of Education in Counseling & Development which I completed in 1991.


With all those degrees why did you decide to return to school?

I had a successful career in social services both as a counselor and administrator. But something was missing. One thing that drew me closer to the final decision to obtain my nursing degree was being the Director of Bread & Roses, Inc., an AIDS Hospice that is no longer operational. For seven years I acted as the primary caregiver for more than 100 men and women. I worked very closely with the home care nurses and due to the nature of the job we became friends. All of the nurses had such a deep commitment to their patients and gave so much of themselves I couldn’t think of doing anything else.


What is your favorite course?

I never would have thought they would be my favorite clinical rotations would be either maternity or psychiatric nursing but it’s a toss-up between the two.


Who is your favorite teacher and why?

One teacher can’t make the difference. It is the cohesiveness of the entire faculty team that drives the energy and success of the nursing students.


What has surprised you the most about CNR?

I was surprised that I was able to make friends for a lifetime. I thought as a second-degree student and being 45 years old I would definitely feel distant from the other students. It really has been a wonderful life-changing experience.


When do you expect to graduate?

May 2008

To find out if  CNR is the right choice for you, please contact:


School of Nursing
Office of the Dean
The College of New Rochelle
29 Castle Place
New Rochelle, NY 10805
914-654-5334  
 email: sn@cnr.edu



O F F I C E  O F  C O M M U N I C A T I O N S
29 Castle Place, New Rochelle, NY 10805

info@cnr.edu
© 2008  The College of New Rochelle