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First Nurse Practitioner in the United States speaks at SUNYIT

By ALLISON NORLIAN

UTICA, N.Y. (WKTV) - Imagine meeting a woman who has gone down in history.

Well, hundreds of aspiring nurses and health professionals got that chance Wednesday.

It was an historic and eventful day at SUNYIT, where the Annual Nursing Teaching Day was celebrated in the campus' clubhouse. It was there that a pioneer in nursing was honored.

Her name is Loretta Ford and she was the very first Nurse Practitioner in all of the United States.

She is a pioneer and a legend in her profession and she paved the way for 180,000 nurse practitioners in America.

The internationally renowned nursing leader has left a legacy and paved the way for so many others like Jennifer Sharrow.

"I think it is an amazing opportunity," Sharrow said. "We have all worked very hard and to see someone so high up that has worked so hard and was the first nurse practitioner. It is an amazing thing. Eventually I'd like to keep going and become a nurse midwife, so it is very inspiring."

Dr. Ford made sure to emphasize that the nursing field is changing and young nursing professionals should continue to learn.

She was also honored by Utica Mayor Robert Palmieri, who named April 24th, Loretta Ford Day in the City of Utica.

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