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Faulkner Hospital School of Nursing class of 1970 celebrates 50 years of friendship with a visit to BWFH

On September 11, 1967, a group of young women met for the first time when they arrived for their first day of class at Faulkner Hospital School of Nursing. Fifty years later, to the day, several members of the class of 1970 returned to Brigham and Women’s Faulkner Hospital to tour a hospital that has changed much over the years.

ICU and IV Team Nurse Director Patricia Marinelli, MSN, RN, herself a graduate of the Faulkner Hospital School of Nursing (class of 1976), was on hand to welcome the group and lead them on a tour. “The class of 1970 has remained tightly connected and wanted to celebrate this 50-year milestone in a special way,” says Marinelli. “Their interest was primarily in Belkin House, the former senior student graduate residence. The “new hospital” (our present structure) did not exist until 1976. The Belkin House staff allowed me to walk them through the facility during a lunch time lull in patient activity. Although a lot has changed there, they were able to capture glimpses of their former dorm rooms and their communal living spaces. In some spaces, the brick work was all that remained to remind them of their home away from home. They also enjoyed the history wall on the first floor and then ate lunch in the cafeteria. Each visitor left with a copy of the History of the Faulkner Hospital book from the gift shop. It was a great day for them and an honor for me to guide their tour.”

Karen Burns Burk from the class of 1970 helped organize the day’s festivities. For her and her classmates, it was a special day. “Returning to the ‘new Faulkner’ 50 years to the day was the highlight of our reunion weekend,” she said. “Pat gave us a wonderful tour. The new hospital is a beautiful, state-of-the-art facility. Being in Belkin House was amazing. And lunch at the hospital was reminiscent of nursing school days when every meal was eaten in the hospital cafeteria.”

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