May 27, 2004


Alyssa Pearson, photo by Stuart White of the Great Falls Tribune.
When Alyssa Pearson hits the floor as a full-fledged nurse, she'll already have five years experience in hospitals and a lifetime of anticipation.

"My mom is a nurse and that's what I've always wanted to do," says the Montana State University student. Pearson just graduated from MSU with her nursing degree, but she has been working at Benefis Hospital in Great Falls for close to five years.

"I got my certified nursing assistant license and applied at Benefis Hospital. I've been working there since high school," says Pearson. Her job has allowed her to fit work around school and gain experience in all the hospital departments.

"That's given me a lot of experience. I just work where needed," she adds. That work has included bathing patients, taking vital signs and helping them with personal needs.

The most important reward is helping patients, she says.

Pearson is a Great Falls native, the daughter of Roger and Karolee Pearson. She graduated from CM Russell High, then took her first two-and-a-half years at MSU in Bozeman before beginning her upper division work in Great Falls. She was recently chosen for a Rotary Award because of her excellent scholarship (she has a 3.74 grade point average) and volunteer work for many organizations. She was a member of Alpha Lambda Delta Freshman Honorary and National Society of Collegiate Scholars while on the Bozeman campus. While completing her upper division in Great Falls she has volunteered at the Great Falls Rescue Mission, Benefis Woman's Health Fair, the Science Olympiad and Relay for Life. She also participated in the College of Nursing Mexicali exchange program. She was recently inducted into the Sigma Theta Tau International Honor Society of Nursing.

May 26, 2004 -- by Carol Flaherty MSU News Service