Margaret Mehlenbacker Tynski of Grand Island was honored at the September awards dinner of the Grand Island Professional Women's Chapter, New York State Women Inc. She was the winner of the chapter's scholarship for adult women returning to college, trade school or a certificate program.
Mehlenbacker Tynski was a gastroenterology technologist at the University of Rochester Medical Center at Strong Memorial Hospital. Starting Oct. 17, she will be a full-time student in the Erie I BOCES licensed practical nurse program and will then proceed to a Bachelor of Nursing program.
She received an Associate of Applied Science from Monroe Community College in 2000 and a Bachelor of Science from SUNY Geneseo in 2003.
She said her most fulfilling career has always been motherhood, and she is glad she made the choice to stay home with her children when they were young. Her children are Zachary, 21, Gabrielle, 20, and William, 16.
When her children were in middle school, she realized this was her chance to begin pursuing her career.
"Accepting a position as a gastroenterology technician at Strong Memorial Hospital allowed me to find my own personal identity. My experiences there were invaluable," she said.
"I was so honored to be part of such a caring community and have the ability to make a profound difference in my patient's lives."
Mehlenbacker Tynski said there is a feeling that comes from initially meeting a patient facing serious health concerns and journeying through their treatments to the point of recovery that provides her with a sense of joy and satisfaction.
According to Mehlenbacker Tynski, changing from medical technology to nursing will allow her the chance to give something of herself each day and take away new thoughts, feelings and ideas.
"The current technological advances in medicine are astounding, and being able to be a part of a team that can change people's lives is my utmost goal and is why I am passionate about continuing my education," Mehlenbacker Tynski concluded.
Diane Dinsmore, president of the Grand Island Professional Women's Chapter, New York State Women Inc., presented the scholarship and a membership in the Grand Island chapter to Mehlenbacker Tynski.
"Your scholarship helps me go forward with my goals. I am already taking steps toward continuing my nursing education after completing the LPN program. I am taking RN program prerequisites now and plan on eventually working as an advanced degree nurse in this community," Mehlenbacker Tynski said.
Previous jobs she enjoyed included as a customer service representative at Swain Ski Resort. She left the ski resort to purchase The Shack at Swain. She was responsible for all aspects of running a seasonal fast food restaurant at Swain Ski Resort. After a few years, she sold The Shack back to the main resort.
Mehlenbacker Tynski said she truly cares about her patients - past, present and future.
"As amazing as our new procedures are, sometimes something as simple as a smile can go a long way to make a patient feel important and cared about. It does more to reassure them, even in situations where there seems to be little comfort."