Frederick Flynn Jr. anguished at the suffering of his beloved wife Susan as ovarian cancer took its course. During her struggle, Fred was profoundly impressed by the skilled and sensitive nursing care she received at Greenwich Hospital in Connecticut.
In 2013, just months after Susan’s passing, Fred learned about the Carol A. Ghiloni Oncology Nursing Fellowship Program during a visit to Mass General. This program gives student nurses the opportunity to learn advanced oncology nursing by working hands-on in an oncology setting. In memory of Susan, Fred became a sponsor of two Ghiloni Fellows annually for the next five years.
But Fred wanted to do more. In 2014, using the widely-acclaimed Ghiloni program as a model, he established the Susan D. Flynn Oncology Nursing Fellowship. This 8-week summer program is available to outstanding rising seniors from leading undergraduate nursing schools.
In its “pilot” year, 9 students were selected for fellowships at four different hospitals: Greenwich and Stamford Hospitals in Connecticut, Wentworth-Douglass Hospital in New Hampshire and the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute in Boston. In 2015, the program is being expanded to include 25 fellows. In addition, several other leading cancer hospitals and nursing schools have joined as partners. Fred’s ultimate goal is to expand the program nationally.
“Fred has boundless energy and passion for improving care for cancer patients and their families through compassionate and expert oncology nursing,” says one nominator. “The impact he is having already is a testament to the power of one person to identify a need and a framework for change.”