Illinois 40 Under 40 Emerging Nurse Leaders Award Winner Highlight: Jenna Palmisano

Meet Jenna Palmisano, a registered school nurse for Glendale Heights. She has been nominated for the class of 2023 Illinois Nurses Foundation 40 Under 40 Emerging Nurse Leaders Award. Designed to highlight young nurses who are making a lasting difference in the healthcare industry, this award celebrates those who shape the future of nursing

Inspiring Leadership and Dedication: Jenna’s Impactful Journey in Nursing

In the face of challenges and uncertainties, true leaders emerge, making a profound impact on their communities. Jenna’s journey in the realm of nursing exemplifies the power of compassion, innovation, and dedication. From simplifying complex lessons for elementary students during the COVID-19 pandemic to revitalizing the social media presence of a nursing organization, Jenna’s story is a testament to the transformative potential of nursing leadership.

Outreach Amidst the Pandemic

When the COVID-19 pandemic swept across the globe, Jenna recognized the need to support and educate her young students during these trying times. She embarked on a mission to create informative videos that simplified the pandemic’s complexities for elementary students. These videos not only explained the significance of safety measures like handwashing and social distancing but also addressed the emotional aspect that accompanies such a confusing period. Jenna’s videos, shared with students nationwide, not only educated but also provided comfort and guidance during uncertain times.

One of her videos, particularly, stood out in breaking down the barrier between healthcare workers and children. Understanding the fear that could arise from healthcare workers’ full PPE appearance, Jenna’s video aimed to humanize these heroes, making them approachable and trustworthy figures in the eyes of children.

A Leader on the Frontlines

As the world grappled with the pandemic, Jenna’s dedication extended to her role on the COVID-19 Safety Team at her school. She invested countless hours in contact tracing, staying up-to-date with ever-changing guidelines, and ensuring the safety of her school community as they navigated the transition to hybrid in-person learning.

Summer brought new challenges, as Jenna collaborated with the local health department to conduct COVID testing. With her guidance, a team administered an impressive 600 tests daily, aiding the community in navigating the uncertainties of the pandemic. Not stopping there, she administered COVID-19 vaccines to her community, demonstrating a commitment to public health and safety.

Cultivating Leadership and Community Engagement

Jenna’s leadership extended beyond her immediate environment. She began her journey with the Illinois Association of School Nurses (IASN) by contributing to the development of their new website. Her dedication didn’t stop there – she took on key roles in the organization, becoming a facilitator, volunteering on the conference planning committee, and assuming the role of Marketing and Communications Coordinator on the IASN Board of Directors in 2022.

Jenna’s innovative approach to revitalizing the organization’s social media presence showcased her adaptability and willingness to embrace new platforms, including Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and even TikTok. She used these platforms to disseminate timely information, promote meetings, and connect school nurses statewide.

Her role in moderating the IASN Listserv emphasized her commitment to fostering connections and sharing opportunities among fellow nurses. Jenna’s dedication to promoting collaboration and growth within the nursing community is evident in every aspect of her journey.

Jenna Palisano: An Inspiring and Impactful Nurse Leader

In just three years, Jenna’s impact has been nothing short of inspiring. Her ability to adapt, innovate, and lead shines brightly, making her a role model for nurses and leaders across the field. As she continues to make strides in education, community engagement, and nursing leadership, her journey stands as a testament to the remarkable potential within the nursing profession.

Congratulations to Jenna Palisano and Glendale Heights for this prestigious honor! The Illinois Nurses Foundation 40 Under 40 Award for Emerging Nurse Leaders is proven to open career doors for its recipients. INF is proud to celebrate nurses like Jenna who have made a lasting impact in the healthcare industry. 

For more information on the INF 40 Under 40 Award Ceremony, click this link

Illinois Nurses Foundation: Support Education, Advocation, and Recognition for Nurses

The Illinois Nurses Foundation is a non-profit organization that supports nurses through various programs, empowering them, promoting excellence, and advancing the nursing profession while also recognizing and celebrating the remarkable achievements of young nurses through the INF 40 Under 40 Emerging Nurse Leaders Award, highlighting their talent and potential for the field’s growth and evolution. Donate to INF today, and you can help empower nurses and improve healthcare!