Excellence in nursing has earned University of Wisconsin Oshkosh alumnus Kevin Meighan ’09, of Fort Defiance, Ariz., an Outstanding Young Alumni Award, which he will receive during the Homecoming festivities in October.
Since graduating from UW Oshkosh, Meighan has worked at Riverside Medical Center in Ambulatory Care/ED. He then climbed the ladder at the Waushara County Health Department, before recently taking a position as the public health nurse at the TseHootSooi Medical Center in Fort Defiance. Meighan also has studied prescription drug abuse with the National Governor’s Association Policy Academy and is a policy coordinator for the La Follett Scholarship.
His efforts and performance in healthcare received notice from UW Oshkosh staff, such as Paula McNiel, assistant professor in the College of Nursing, who nominated Meighan. McNiel invited him to return to UWO as a guest lecturer for her classes full of senior students.
She said Meighan is a role model for current students, demonstrating the UW Oshkosh College of Nursing vision of developing caring and scholarly leaders. McNiel praised his work in drug awareness and prevention, as he held town-hall style meetings in Waushara County and was chosen to serve on the State Council on Alcohol and Other Drug Abuse’s Heroin Ad Hoc Committee.
“His presentation was powerful and he had students wanting to stay after class to hear more, seek out resources and even discuss concerns they have regarding family and friends related to drug abuse,” McNiel said. “He continually engages new and unique opportunities to interact with students, healthcare workers and the community at large. His involvement with the group, ‘Rise Together,’ highlighted his passion to connect and reach out to all in Waushara County.”
Meighan also took part in the Wisconsin Nurses Association and the North Woods Coalition board of directors. He received the Carol Graham Scholarship, the Salmon Scholarship for Nursing, the Nancy Salan Nursing Scholarship and was a nominee for the Public Health Nursing Achievement Award. His earned the 2014 Florence Nightingale Award for local, regional and state leadership.
Meighan has traveled to Botswana, Africa, to volunteer as a registered nurse and physiology tutor at a free HIV clinic in Maun. He also volunteered as a nursing consultant for the Wisconsin Association of Perinatal Care on Neonatal Abstinence Syndrome.
Meighan said UWO taught him the values of being a leader.
“The College of Nursing is not only a huge test of a person’s character, it also instills a commitment to nursing that brings out the best in leadership qualities of the graduate,” Meighan explained.
Meighan said his UWO hero is McNiel, because she has left a lasting impact on who he is as a nurse.
“She exemplifies the leadership, intellect and experience that all nurses want to aspire to,” Meighan said. “There really are a lot of faculty and staff at UWO who have had a tremendous impact on my life.”
For more information about the alumni awards celebration on Oct. 16 during Homecoming 2015, please contact the UW Oshkosh Alumni Relations Office at (920) 424-3449 or send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
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