The Future of Medicine

Thanks to the generosity of the Virginia B. Toulmin Foundation’s Healthcare Scholarship Program, The Painted Turtle is able to provide financial support for students who have worked as a summer staff member at The Painted Turtle camp and are pursuing a course of study in a medical or healthcare field.

The late Virginia B. Toulmin started her career in public health as a nurse and lived her life with a spirit of supporting others. Her foundation offers these scholarships with the hope of inspiring exceptional young healthcare professionals.

The Painted Turtled is thrilled to announce the winners of the 2014 Virginia B. Toulmin Healthcare Scholarships. Congratulations go to:

Theresa Maloney, Nursing Student

THERESA MALONEY, CREATIVE ARTSThe Painted Turtle has been a part of Theresa’s life for a long time, as she attended camp for four summers as a camper and two summers as a Leadership Camper. Theresa combined her passion for theater and camp and returned to The Painted Turtle as a summer staff member in our Performing and Creative Arts program area in 2012, 2013, and 2014. Theresa has a special talent for transforming the Creative Arts room into a supportive and creative place where campers explore characters, performance art, and improvisation.

“The Painted Turtle instilled in me the idea that my illness does not have to define me. I learned that I could achieve any dream that I set my mind to. I have loved being able to not only experience the camp magic, but also help create it.”

Theresa is a nursing student with a special interest in pediatrics at Creighton University College of Nursing in Omaha Nebraska. She will graduate in 2015 with a degree in nursing, and she hopes to return to The Painted Turtle as a summer staff nurse.

Sean Kearns, Nursing Student

SEAN KEARNS, ENTERTAINMENTHailing from Ireland, Sean first came to The Painted Turtle in 2011 and worked in our Performing and Creative Arts program area. With his love of drama, he encouraged the campers to explore their imaginations and creativity with costumes and props galore. In 2014, Sean returned to The Painted Turtle and led our Entertainment Team, developing and leading all camp programs including Campfire, Stage Night, Carnival and Silly Olympics with creative themes, jokes, videos, and characters.

Sean is currently studying nursing with an interest in pediatrics and preparing to take the National Council Licensure Examination for nursing so he can work in the United States. Sean will no doubt be an amazing nurse and be able to take his camp spirit, sense of humor, and infectious energy to each of his patients in the hospital. “Nurses and other health professionals can learn a lot from camp; I know I sure have.”

Kristen Gianotti, Nursing Student

KRISTEN GIANOTTI, CABIN COUNSELORAn Oregon native, Kristen heard about The Painted Turtle from her uncle, a longtime medical volunteer at camp, and then from her sister who worked at camp for three summers. Kristen joined The Painted Turtle as a summer counselor in 2013, but was not able to come to camp due to the wildfire that cancelled all summer sessions. Kristen instead volunteered at another SeriousFun Children’s camp that year and was able to bring her experiences and knowledge back to The Painted Turtle as a cabin counselor in 2014.

Kristen is a nursing student at Gonzaga University in Spokane, Washington and will graduate with a degree in nursing in 2016. “I hope that in the future I will be able to come back and either work or volunteer as a nurse at the Painted Turtle.” As seen at camp, Kristen’s unique character, zaniness, sense of humor, and spunk are excellent characteristics for a nurse and will help her create many special connections with each of her patients.

Cara Sherlock, Physical Therapy Student

CARA SHERLOCK, CABIN COUNSELORCara first heard about The Painted Turtle through her professor at Northern Arizona University. She immediately applied for a summer staff position and joined us in 2014 as a cabin counselor, and has also continued to return as a Family Weekend volunteer.

Cara is currently pursuing a doctorate in physical therapy at Northern Arizona University. With her knowledge of physical therapy, both in the classroom and at a physical therapy clinic, Cara was an asset to The Painted Turtle team and contributed to training fellow staff members on proper and safe care for campers in wheelchairs. “Providing around-the-clock care for children with special needs at camp was unlike any experience that I have gained in the classroom.”

Cara will graduate in 2016 with a doctorate in physical therapy. At camp, Cara filled campers’ weeks with a lot of fun and laughter – we know she will continue to do this in her professional career as a physical therapist.

Bethany Roessler, Physical Therapy Student

BETHANY ROESSLER, CABIN COUNSELORBethany joined the camp’s summer team in 2014 as a cabin counselor. “It was one of the greatest, most rewarding and enlightening summers of my life. I learned a lot about myself and saw many qualities in the campers and staff that I now strive to emulate.”

Because of her work experience at a physical therapy clinic and her knowledge of fitness, Bethany was placed in cabins with campers that required the highest level of physical therapy support throughout the summer. Bethany always responded with the upmost care and respect for campers in sensitive personal care situations, and coached fellow staff members to do the same.

Bethany has chosen to pursue a doctorate in physical therapy from Northern Arizona University and will graduate with a doctorate in physical therapy in 2016. As we have continued to see Bethany at Family Weekends, we know she will provide excellent, supportive, and safe care to her patients throughout her physical therapy career.

Thank you, Virginia B. Toulmin Foundation, for supporting the next generation of committed health care professionals and for the difference that you are making in their lives!