Health sciences graduates encouraged to embrace career challenges

May 19, 2018

Health sciences graduates celebrate during Undergraduate Commencement.

Denise Fiore, chief operating officer of Lawrence + Memorial Hospital in New London, Connecticut, had a simple question for School of Health Sciences graduates: “What kind of imprint would you like to make as you embark upon life as a graduate?”

As her audience visualized their postgraduate lives, Fiore reminded them that making an imprint in health care means making an impact on the lives of patients ­­— and it’s a team effort.

“Teamwork not only allows you to be exposed to other thoughts and ideas, but also to be flexible and adaptable,” she said. “Teamwork tends to elevate your thinking.”

Fiore was the Commencement speaker for the evening ceremony in our TD Bank Sports Center. On an individual level, Fiore emphasized confidence and fearlessness. She implored students to actively embrace challenges and unfamiliar situations, noting that uncertainty has the potential to become opportunity.

“Invent yourself in a way that will make you feel extremely satisfied, but at times even fearful,” she said. “I can guarantee you that having an aspect of adventure in what you do will provide you with fulfillment.”

As she reflected on her own challenges, Fiore spoke of her “personal board of directors” — mentors who had affected her life in some way and provided guidance at every stage in her career.

“Select people who can be honest with you,” she explained. “Members of your ‘personal board’ may change as you mature, but you will be enriched by the diversity of their input.”

Fiore was awarded an honorary doctor of humane letters in recognition of her four decades of excellence and leadership in the health care industry. She previously served as vice president of clinical services at Yale New Haven Hospital from 2010-17, and is both a fellow of the American College of Healthcare Executives and a board member of the Connecticut Association of Healthcare Executives.

Richard Allen Maiella ’18 called on his fellow graduates to acknowledge, cultivate and protect their gift.

"Take a step back and realize that to have a passion for health care is a gift," he said. "Continue to develop your mind every day. Live not only to love, but to learn. Every day you will be faced with a challenge. We have the emotional power to respond to life in the way that we want."

Catherine Risigo-Wickline ’87 welcomed the Class of 2018 into the alumni community.

Richard Allen Maiella speaks at a podium during Commencement
Final thoughts
Richard Allen Maiella ’18 addressed his fellow School of Health Sciences graduates.

The School of Health Sciences Commencement was the third of six undergraduate ceremonies the university hosted on May 19 and 20. In all, there were 1,626 degree candidates from six schools:

  • 353 in the College of Arts and Sciences

  • 430 in the School of Business

  • 186 in the School of Communications

  • 65 in the School of Engineering

  • 440 in the School of Health Sciences

  • 217 in the School of Nursing

In addition, Quinnipiac awarded a total of 1,244 degrees to graduate, law and medical students on May 12 and 13.

Quinnipiac is a dynamic, three-campus university where professors who want to know students by name come to teach, and where students who want a personal, challenging education come to learn.

Located in Southern New England, Quinnipiac’s top-rated academics, low faculty-to-student ratio and Division I athletics are just some of the reasons why it is consistently ranked among the best universities by U.S. News & World Report and The Princeton Review. It is one of 100 universities to have both a law school and a medical school with the opening of the Frank H. Netter MD School of Medicine in 2013, and its Polling Institute is respected by media organizations around the globe.

Faculty members are experts in their fields and generous with their time. The university prepares undergraduate and graduate students for success in business, communications, engineering, health, education, law, medicine, nursing and the liberal arts and sciences. More than 100 programs are offered to 6,784 undergraduate and 2,884 graduate students.

Throughout its rich history, Quinnipiac has remained true to its three core values: high-quality academic programs, a student-oriented environment and a strong sense of community.

The university is hosting 10 Commencement ceremonies, including our inaugural ceremony for the Frank H. Netter MD School of Medicine and the first ceremony for the newly formed School of Engineering.

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