The Diversity in Nursing Association (DNA) is the only nursing student organization that is diversity-oriented. As a group, we work to increase diversity within Kent State University College of Nursing through peer and faculty support. Our focus is on community building, professional development, and mentorship. Our mentorship program pairs students not yet admitted to the nursing program with a peer mentor currently in the program. Mentors in this leadership role pass down their knowledge and experience in order to assists other members. Membership does not require students to become peer mentors or take part in the mentoring program; however, all members interested in becoming mentors must be nursing students.

“I joined DNA because I wanted to be part of a student organization that helps to increase diversity within the college,” said DNA secretary, Kayshawn Wade. “I also wanted to find a way to step out of my comfort zone and help other students break out of theirs as well.”

Throughout the year, DNA hosts social and community-oriented events, along with their diversity-focused activities. Events have included guest speakers, such as Daniel Nilsson from the Diversity Outreach Program, clothing drives for Haven of Rest, participation in Flashathon, and holiday themed get-togethers.

“DNA is great way to network and make new friends,” said DNA mentorship chair, Carl Horton. “I have developed on an academic, professional, and personal level. This organization has allowed me to help my nursing peers while simultaneously receiving advice from others.”

All students are welcome and invited to join DNA! In addition to nursing students, membership includes students in other healthcare fields who have expressed an interest in promoting diversity. DNA facilitates a student’s ability to learn about and educate others on diversity within the field of nursing, an important topic as diversity affects everyone. DNA membership allows students to build confidence in leadership and peer teamwork. These skills cannot just be taught; they must be practiced. Developing these skills early will prepare students for their time with a preceptor, and may encourage some students to consider becoming a future preceptor or nurse leader.

“DNA helps me socialize and focus on my academics at the same time,” said mentorship chair, Erica Noble. My favorite thing about DNA is meeting new people who share the same goal of becoming a nurse!”

Don’t miss out on the opportunity to achieve academic success and develop professional skills such as mentorship and leadership. Join DNA today!

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