Serving Professionals Whose Patients Expect the Most
All the students in the Nurse Executive program have full-time jobs, but the program is conveniently structured so that they can take all-day classes on Fridays. Backed by TC scholarships, students earn a master’s degree in two years, while a doctorate usually takes three years of coursework with added time for the candidate's dissertation.
That combination of benefits was a critical selling point for Giselle Melendez (Ed.D. '16), nurse leader at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, where she manages 90 staff members consisting of nurses and nursing assistants in the inpatient pediatric unit and the pediatric intensive care unit.
Melendez is a New York City native whose grandparents emigrated from Puerto Rico to create better opportunities for their children and grandchildren. She has been a nurse since 2004, her career blossoming as cancer care has made advances that have enabled many children to survive illnesses that not long ago were almost uniformly fatal. Parents from around the world bring their children to Memorial Sloan Kettering -- which is why Melendez is determined to keep honing her skills.
“Some of the children we see were treated at other hospitals that couldn’t cure them,” she says. “The treatments here allow them to have a better quality of life.”
The hospital has the best doctors and the best nurses, she says, who must keep up with the latest technology and patient cancer care while “managing the expectations of parents and their children.
“I have a great nursing staff and I always know my staff has made a difference in a child’s life.”
Melendez says her career goal is to become a chief nursing officer, a position that will have even more responsibility than her current job. She’s confident that, with her TC degree, she’ll get there.
“My doctorate in nursing executive and leadership makes me an ideal candidate to be a chief nursing officer,” she says. “Having this doctorate has a lot of clout in the field. I was asked recently to be keynote speaker for an upcoming pediatric nursing conference in Scotland. I know this degree has opened may opportunities.” — Robert Florida
Published Wednesday, Oct 4, 2017