Celebrating African American Nurses

Mary_Eliza_Mahoney

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 
February is Black History Month, also referred to as National African-American History Month. It is a time to recognize the achievements of African-Americans in US History.
This year, I want us to remember Mary Eliza Mahoney.
Mary E. Mahoney was born in 1845 in Massachusetts. Her parents were originally from North Carolina and were freed slaves who moved to the North in pursuit of life with less racial discrimination.
Mary graduated from her nursing program at New England Hospital for Women and Children in 1905.
Because of the hospitals policy stating that only one Black and one Jewish nurse could enroll per class, Mary was not able to receive her diploma until she had worked for 20 years.
In 1908, She co-founded the National Association of Colored Graduate Nurses ( NACGN) along with Adah Thomas.
This organization’s objective was to uplift the standards of the African-American Nurse.
When I think of 20 years before graduation, I cannot even imagine.

 

When I left Africa as a Registered Nurse, I had to undergo a process of test taking and exams before I could finally enroll to take my NCLEX exam. It took me one year and honestly, it felt like a lifetime.
Mary Eliza Mahoney must have been the most patient nurse in the midst of discrimination. Most of us today would have given up.

 

This month, Rosetta Thurman of the Happy Black Woman blog has a treat for us.

Every day, she features one successful African-American entrepreneur on her Podcast.
Click here to listen to Rosetta’s Podcast:

 

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