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  Avila nursing students support their ‘dear neighbor’    
  Kansas City, MO    
November 7, 2008

This fall, Avila nursing students have participated in multiple flu shot clinics and health screenings in both Missouri and Kansas, living out Avila’s mission to help the dear neighbor.

In the months of October and November Avila nursing students have given flu shots to people in the community for the American Red Cross, and by the end of November they will have participated in nine clinics. The clinics have covered many communities including Kansas City, Mo., Liberty, Claycomo, Grandview, Independence, and Raytown. The students will end their volunteer service by giving flu shots on Avila’s campus on Nov. 10 and 12.

These same students have also been involved in numerous health screenings in both Kansas and Missouri. Several students have assisted the nurses in the Shawnee Mission School District to do both preschool and elementary vision and hearing screenings. On the Missouri side, a large group of students assisted with a health screening at the Freda Markley Early Childhood Education Center.

“Without the help of the nursing students, it would be very difficult to get all of these health screenings completed,” said Lonna Boen, assistant professor of nursing. “These activities are examples of how the School of Nursing provides service to the community and reaches out to the dear neighbor.”

Avila University has deep ties to their dear neighbor, adopting the mission of the Sisters of St. Joseph of Carondelet, to "… practice of all the spiritual and corporal works of mercy of which woman is capable and which will most benefit the … dear neighbor."

Avila University President Ron Slepitza, Ph.D., explained that as an institution founded by and focused on the values of the Sisters of St. Joseph of Carondelet, Avila has broadly educated students, taught them to think, to communicate well, to understand their world, and prepared them to work with others who were most in need of their service.
“They learned to live their values and act on their faith,” Slepitza said. “By the labor of these sisters, Avila has prepared students to be professionally competent, thoughtful, ethical individuals with a passion for serving others.”  

Boen noted that helping the dear neighbor is one of the Avila values that the School of Nursing embraces and a value that the department hopes to instill in their nursing students who will be the future caregivers in our communities.


Avila University is a private, co-educational, values-based liberal arts institution founded by the Sisters of St. Joseph of Carondelet, offering undergraduate, graduate, and adult degree programs. Avila University is located at 119th and Wornall Rd in southwest suburban Kansas City, Mo.