By: Scott Campbell
Four years ago, the residents at Bethany Village Continuing Care Retirement Community of Mechanicsburg established a nursing education grant program for employees.
To date, $20,000 have been awarded to recipients.
The goal is to provide career advancement opportunities within the organization, and to ultimately provide reliable and exceptional care services to the residents, consistent with Bethany’s mission, vision and values.
The number and amount of awards vary by year, depending on funds available and the quality and quantity of applicants. This year’s winner will be announced at a tea on April 30.
The 2011 beneficiary was Lori Crum.
“I learned about the grant through a pamphlet that was posted on one of the bulletin boards in this building,” remembers Crum. “I applied and was accepted. At the time, I was taking courses to earn my degree in nursing. Still am. So, the money came in handy.”
Based on the grant’s rationale, the resident board that selected Crum could not have made a more appropriate choice.
Along with her husband, the 51-year-old Colonial Park woman has raised eight children while working full-time and continuing her education.
She is currently case manager for Bethany Village. “I receive data on the residents from a variety of sources – the nurses, nurses’ assistants and social workers,” she says. “The information is compiled in a minimum data set, or MDS. This information can tell us if residents are getting what they need.”
That part of her job can get intense.
“There is a time crunch associated with the MDS,” she says. “The data needs to be submitted promptly to the Commonwealth for reimbursements. I generally work 7:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. but often stay later when the MDS deadline is approaching.”
“I love working with the residents, and getting to meet their family members. Bethany Village really cares about the residents and the staff. I’ve never worked at a better place.” ~ Lori Crum
Crum has been employed at Bethany for five and a half years. “I started as a staff nurse and worked the 3-to-11 shift. Then I became the restorative nurse coordinator before assuming my duties as case manager about two years ago.”
She and her husband also owned an in-home, assisted-living service.
“We did that from 2003 until last year,” says Crum. “But we couldn’t compete against the large corporations. They are able to offer benefits to employees.”
Crum grew up in Camp Hill and graduated from Cedar Cliff High School. She became a licensed practical nurse before deciding to attend Harrisburg Area Community College, from which she earned an associate degree in social science.
“Now I’m working on the nursing degree,” she says. “I have four more courses to complete.”
And after that?
“Oh, I don’t know. I’ll probably do something more. I wouldn’t know what to do with myself if I wasn’t taking some course. I’m a perpetual student.”
Regarding her current experience, Crum declares, “I love working with the residents, and getting to meet their family members. Bethany Village really cares about the residents and the staff. I’ve never worked at a better place.”
Funds for the nursing grant are acquired through donations and are monitored by the Asbury Foundation on the behalf of Bethany Village.
The grant’s advisory council is comprised of no fewer than three resident representatives, the director of human resources and the director of annual giving.
The council is responsible for organizing and managing the grant process, fundraising, marketing and selecting and announcing the annual award winners.