Not that anyone is counting, but Harolyn Davis knows that there are exactly 277 miles, via Interstate 95, between her current residence in Shrewsbury, Massachusetts and her beloved Philadelphia.
After she graduated in 2011 from Immaculata’s R.N. to B.S.N. program, Harolyn’s husband Cecil followed her example and enrolled in the undergraduate Organization Dynamics Program. She then followed him to Massachusetts when he accepted a new job as a technical consultant for EMC in 2012. Although the couple appreciated the new job opportunity, they both missed family back home.
“I like to say that I was ‘rescued’ by Immaculata after spending years chipping away at an engineering degree. At Immaculata, I found a sense of mission in completing my degree.”
However, the new way of life that COVID-19 forced upon the world provided the Davises with a new outlet to communicate with old friends. “One unexpected blessing is that we reconnected with our home church, Bethlehem Baptist Church in Spring House, Pennsylvania, via remote communications and presentation,” states Cecil. “A major part of our lives is attributed to family and faith, and reconnecting with our roots in the Del Val is essential to our survival in New England, even before the pandemic,” he adds.
As a Philadelphia native, growing up in the Northern Liberties section of the city, Harolyn continues to root for the Eagles—she just can’t bring herself to jump on the Patriots’ bandwagon—neither can Cecil. Harolyn has fond memories of her childhood. Her father worked for the Philadelphia Gas Works as pipefitter/welder and taught her the importance of loving what you do for a living. She recalls that he would say, “It makes it easier to come back to work the next day.”
Born into a military family in Sacramento, California, Cecil moved across the country frequently. He ended up in New Jersey and met Harolyn in 1993, through her nephew who was a classmate and friend of Cecil. They married two years later. Harolyn earned her associate degree in nursing from Gloucester County Community College in South Jersey.
While Cecil was pursuing an engineering degree at a local university, Harolyn registered for nursing courses. She was impressed that Immaculata’s class schedules were flexible to accommodate those who were already R.N.s and working full-time. Harolyn found a supportive and engaging cohort at Penn-Presbyterian Hospital in West Philadelphia, near her childhood neighborhood.
Inspired by Harolyn’s success at Immaculata, Cecil enrolled and was equally excited about finding the perfect fit for him. “My experience at Immaculata was a true blessing,” he says emphatically. “I like to say that I was ‘rescued’ by Immaculata after spending years chipping away at an engineering degree. At Immaculata, I found a sense of mission in completing my degree.”
Switching from an engineering degree to a business-focused program broadened Cecil’s career prospects, giving him a management foundation that helped him understand the subtleties of how organizations operate. Driven to continue learning, he completed a master’s degree in cybersecurity management since moving to New England. Cecil recently accepted a position as a migration solutions architect at Thermo Fisher Scientific near Boston.
Getting into the administrative side of nursing, Harolyn is currently an intake care coordinator at Long Term Solutions. Her B.S.N. degree helps her recommend individual care plans for insurance companies who then follow up on her recommendations.
When the family originally moved to Massachusetts, she took a position with GENEX Services, Inc. While there, she earned her alma mater a one-time $20,000 scholarship to support the educational needs of nursing students at Immaculata who learn the philosophy of holistic care. Immaculata’s emphasis on holistic nursing makes Harolyn fondly remember her father’s words: love what you do so you return to work the next day.
Bringing the philosophy of holistic care to their own lives, Harolyn and Cecil are dedicated to nurturing their 10-year-old daughter’s mind, body and spirit.
“She’s the undisputed star of both sides of our families, and we’re extremely proud of her,” Cecil exclaims. Though it’s a little early to start applying to colleges, their daughter beams when they tell her she’ll be going to Pennsylvania to attend Immaculata!