Longwood Nursing Faculty Receives Award From Statewide Organization

Published 4:34 pm Thursday, February 23, 2012

Hadley Sporbert, a member of the Longwood University nursing faculty, recently received the Most Supportive Faculty Member award from the Virginia Nursing Students' Association (VNSA).

The award, one of two faculty awards given annually by the VNSA, was presented Feb. 4 during the organization's annual convention at the University of Virginia. Sporbert, one of three original members of the Longwood nursing faculty, is a nursing lecturer and faculty adviser to the Longwood VNSA chapter.

“It's validating to be recognized, and I'm honored,” said Sporbert, a registered nurse whose background is in community health. “I'm truly grateful for, and humbled by, the recognition, which means a lot. I'm also humbled to be part of these students' nursing journey.”

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Recipients of the award have to be nominated by a student. Sporbert was nominated by Molly Dibble, president of Longwood's VNSA chapter, who noted in her nomination letter that Sporbert was “integral” to the chapter's founding and its continuing success.

“Professor Sporbert has put in countless hours of advising and participation in our chapter's activities, from attending fundraisers to raise money to contributing to VNSA convention fees for chapter members to being a wonderful mentor to all students who seek her advice,” the letter says. “She is always available to provide guidance to students, and through her obvious passion for the field of nursing she inspires us all every day…She continually challenges her students to improve themselves and is always ready to suggest new ideas on how the chapter can become more involved with the VNSA.”

Among Sporbert's activities with the student chapter are twice organizing volunteers at the local FACES food pantry, organizing a blood pressure screening at two Longwood Wellness Fairs, helping arrange a Operation Christmas Child packing party, and sponsoring and attending numerous fundraisers and awareness events from 2009 through 2012.

“Since coming here, Hadley has proved to be an excellent faculty member, team player and educator,” said Dr. Melody Eaton, director of the Nursing Program. “As with any new program, there have been bumps along the way, but Hadley has never wavered. She is very goal-oriented and truly cares about the caliber of our new curriculum and student engagement. She has exceeded all expectations.”

Sporbert, who has been a nurse since 1994, joined the Longwood nursing faculty in August 2009 after working in community health for 15 years at Masonicare Home Health & Hospice in Wallingford, Conn. From 2005-09 she taught as an adjunct in a nursing program at Stone Academy in Hamden, Conn. She is a native of Meriden, Conn.

Sporbert is currently enrolled in a family nurse practitioner graduate program at Radford University. She hopes to complete her second master's degree in 2013 and, in the second part of the program, a doctorate in 2014. “It's a clinically-based program, which will make me stronger both clinically and in the classroom,” she said.

She participated, along with nursing students Sarah Callaway and Amber Hare, in a medical mission trip to Honduras in June 2011 as part of the Richmond-based Friends of Barnabas Foundation of the Methodist Church. The trip was co-led by Patti Wagner, a clinical nurse in Longwood's Student Health and Wellness Center.

Twenty-six Longwood nursing students attended the recent VNSA convention. Marsha Blevins, a junior who is vice president of the Longwood chapter, had been secretary of VNSA until her one-year term ended at the convention. VNSA is a student-managed organization representing future nurses from more than 75 nursing education programs throughout Virginia. Its mission is to “foster the professional and personal development of student nurses by providing educational resources, leadership opportunities and career guidance.”

“At the convention, I had no idea I would receive an award,” Sporbert said. “I couldn't even get out of my chair when my name was announced. I was in shock.”