My name is Kara Conflenti, and I am a recipient of the James Holman & Pauline Neel Carr Scholarship. I graduated from Zionsville Community High School in June of 2008 with an Academic Honors diploma. In high school, I was an active member of the National Honor Society and National French Honor Society. I earned a total of four varsity letters through my participation in cross country and track and field. I began enrollment as a full-time student in the Purdue University School of Nursing in August of 2008. My interest in pursuing a career in nursing developed throughout my high school years. Through volunteer work and shadowing experiences, I came to realize that nursing is the perfect profession for me.

I have had countless opportunities for personal and professional growth as a Purdue University student. Upon completion of my senior cross country season at ZCHS, I knew that I wanted to compete at the collegiate level. I walked on to the Purdue University Women’s Cross Country and Track and Field teams, and I am now a two-time varsity letter-winner. I was named team captain of the Women’s Cross Country team last fall, received awards for having the highest grade-point average on our team, and received Academic All-Big Ten Honors. Competing in the Big Ten Conference has been an invaluable experience, and I am looking forward to a successful senior year.

I have truly enjoyed being a student in the Purdue University School of Nursing. I recently received an award for being the only junior-level nursing student with a 4.0 GPA. Every semester I have been at Purdue, I have been on the Dean’s List, Athletic Director’s Honor Roll, and received Semester Honors for my academic accomplishments. I am so excited to graduate from Purdue University this spring with my Bachelor’s of Science degree in Nursing.

I am blessed to have had job experience in the medical field throughout my college education.  After completion of my freshman year, I was hired at St. Vincent Hospital in Indianapolis as a patient care technician on a medical-surgical floor, and I have held the position for the past three years. My job at St. Vincent has provided me with countless opportunities to improve upon my clinical skills and become immersed in the medical field.

I am looking forward to a bright future! This past summer, I spent six weeks in Los Angeles as a Summer Nurse Extern in the UCLA Health System. The externship program was voluntary. Throughout the program, I had amazing opportunities and experiences to explore several fields of nursing care, including the emergency department, intensive care units, and operating rooms. I am overjoyed to share that I have been offered a job in the medical intensive care unit at Santa Monica UCLA Medical Center and Orthopaedic Hospital upon graduation from Purdue. I plan to move to Los Angeles next fall, and begin my career as an RN in the UCLA medical intensive care unit.

I am thrilled for my senior year at Purdue University. I am a Senior Scholar Student in the School of Nursing Center for Nursing Education and Simulation, where I assist my peers in the development of their clinical skills and assist the staff in the maintenance of the laboratory facilities. My classes are interesting and thought-provoking. I am currently in season for cross country, and training is going very well.

The main piece of advice that I can offer a graduating high school student is to fully commit yourself to whatever you do. Recognize your goals and aspirations, and do everything you can to work towards them. Hard work, commitment, and dedication to success do not go unnoticed. Always put yourself in the position to be successful.