Penny explained how his decision to attend Keystone was one of the best decisions he has made after arriving in the United States from the Northwest Region of Cameroon, within the village of Babessi. The training he received here, which included obtaining his high school equivalency, nursing assistant certification, and driver’s license has paved the way for his success which includes full time employment in the Pavilion at St. Luke Village, graduating from Wilkes University with a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science and International Studies and now enrolling in the Master Program for International Affairs at the University of Pittsburgh.
“My story would not have happened if it wasn’t for Keystone,” he said. “I am thankful for all the help the staff gave me in attaining the success I’ve had.”
Penny said during his speech, “I came to Keystone with many goals and worked hard to achieve them. Some I had to change as I went along but my education here, along with hard work, has helped me accomplish what I desired. The opportunity for all of you is there. Keystone starts it and then you need to work to complete it.”
Penny spoke to CNA students about the demands of working in nursing and the need to mentally prepare for the job. He also spoke to them about patient care and the passion needed when working in nursing. He said, “It is very physically and mentally demanding. In long term care you become very much attached to your patients and when the unfortunate occurs, you definitely feel the loss.” Continuing he said, “They become like family. As students you need to prepare yourself for the mental aspect of the job. In the end, you will find it very rewarding.”
He concluded his keynote speech with a powerful statement for students. “There is so much you can accomplish. The graduates here today have started this journey to get there. Now you need to continue and complete your goals. The Keystone staff and fellow students helped you to now, the rest is your goal to achieve.”