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Sister Mary Irene MacKinnon and Sister Mary Gabriel LeClair Memorial Award in Nursing
Maximum Amount: $500.00
Faculty: Nursing
Current 4th Year
Occasion: Deans' Academic Honours and Awards Night
Process: Recommendation from the School of Nursing
Scholarship Type: Award
Description: Awarded to a Nursing student entering fourth year who displays strong leadership skills, particularly those of collaboration, compassion, and the empowerment of others; and maintains a satisfactory academic record.
Background: Sister Mary Irene MacKinnon, 1917-2002, was a Sister of St. Martha of Prince Edward Island. She was a dedicated bedside nurse at the Charlottetown Hospital, and a supervisor and instructor in the Charlottetown Hospital School of Nursing. In 1969, she became the first Director of the Prince Edward Island School of Nursing. She was involved provincially and nationally as a member of various health associations, and held an executive position on the Canadian Nurses' Association. Sister Mary Irene was the Congregation Leader of the Sisters of St. Martha, 1973-1981. In this leadership role she encouraged the Sisters to become involved in new ministries such as parish work, prison chaplaincy, spiritual direction and retreat work. In 1992, Sister Mary Irene was awarded an honorary doctorate (LLD) from U.P.E.I. acknowledging the many years of dedicated leadership she gave to the nursing profession. A truly great woman, she left her mark on her congregation and the province. Her legacy of kindness and generosity remains with all who loved her, her many relatives, friends and the Sisters of St. Martha. Sister Mary Gabriel LeClair, 1924-1994, was a graduate of the Charlottetown Hospital School of Nursing when she entered the Sister of St. Martha of Prince Edward Island in 1948. After studying Pediatrics at Toronto Sick Children's Hospital, she became Supervisor of Pediatrics at the Charlottetown Hospital in 1954 and remained in that position until 1962. In the following years she became clinical supervisor at the Charlottetown and PEI Schools of Nursing. In 1973, Sister Mary Gabriel was appointed Director of the PEI School of Nursing. She continued in this capacity until her retirement in 1993. During the years leading to the creation of the nursing degree program at UPEI , Sister Mary Gabriel worked tirelessly as a member of the transition committee to ensure that the nursing program would be established as a faculty or school rather than as a program within the science department. Sister Mary Gabriel had a great love of children and had an excellent ability to relate to them. She loved to teach. Among the many other gifts for which she will be remembered are her love of art and her ability to express herself through the medium of painting. Her paintings still lend their beauty to the walls of Mount St. Mary's. Sister Mary Gabriel is remembered as a dedicated nurse- administrator, a devoted Sister of St. Martha, and a friend to many. She was dearly loved by her family and congregation .
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