KSU nursing grad ready for new adventures after a ‘hectic’ final year

Cheyenne Murphy
Cheyenne Murphy

KENNESAW, Ga. (Jul 20, 2020) — A tumultuous school year will end in triumph for Cheyenne Murphy.

The nursing major dealt with a global pandemic and all the resulting consequences—a postponed wedding, online classes, ground-zero work experience and the death of her grandmother because of COVID-19—and has emerged one of the latest graduates of Kennesaw State University.

“This has been the most hectic year I have ever experienced,” Murphy said. “Between the pandemic, completing my nursing degree, current social and political events, and getting married, it is no wonder this year has been hectic! Though I did experience many personal let-downs, I truly learned what it meant to make the best out of some of the worst situations. Positivity and perseverance go a very long way.”

Along with a nursing externship in the labor and delivery unit at Wellstar Cobb Hospital, Murphy still had coursework to complete, including clinical assessments, a clinical project, essays and weekly modules. While she and her classmates made the transition, she said they miss not only each other’s company but also the ability to practice nursing skills in a hands-on environment.

Fortunately, Murphy said her professors have been flexible and understanding of the current circumstances and have shepherded the summer graduating class to the finish line with great patience.

“I believe our professors have done everything possible to set us up for success. They, especially Katherine Barnett, have been incredibly encouraging and positive throughout the entire online experience. I could not imagine going through online nursing school if it were not for the flexibility and positivity of our teachers.”

Cheyenne MurphyOutside of school, Murphy had a lot on her plate the past couple of months. She scheduled her wedding for this April, but the venue closed down because of the pandemic. Meanwhile, she and her fiancé had a smaller ceremony in July, and the venue rescheduled the ceremony for one year hence—April 10, 2021—so she will have the big ceremony as planned.

Along with the wedding, Murphy’s KSU story has another happy ending. On July 6, she said, she accepted a night-shift nursing position on the labor and delivery unit at Augusta University Medical Center, and she and her husband have signed a lease on a house nearby—convenient to her job and his deployment to Fort Gordon.

“My love for women’s services is inexpressible, and I could not imagine doing anything else,” Murphy said. “There is something to be said about being present during the delivery of a new life. I can hardly believe that I will be doing that for a career. I am incredibly lucky.”

Murphy heads into the nursing field in a crazy time, but said the friends she made and the professors who supported her gave her the wings she needed to rise above the storm.

“Though it did not quite go as planned, my last few months of college treated me well,” she said. “I am blessed to be surrounded by amazingly supportive classmates and professors who willingly lent me a shoulder to lean on. They made this senior year experience all that much more tolerable.”

– Dave Shelles

Submitted photos


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A leader in innovative teaching and learning, Kennesaw State University offers more than 150 undergraduate, graduate and doctoral degrees to its approximately 41,000 students. With 11 colleges on two metro Atlanta campuses, Kennesaw State is a member of the University System of Georgia and the third-largest university in the state. The university’s vibrant campus culture, diverse population, strong global ties and entrepreneurial spirit draw students from throughout the region and from 92 countries across the globe. Kennesaw State is a Carnegie-designated doctoral research institution (R2), placing it among an elite group of only 6 percent of U.S. colleges and universities with an R1 or R2 status, and one of the 50 largest public institutions in the country. For more information, visit kennesaw.edu

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