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SNHU Spotlight: Michelle Nachand, BSN and MSN Graduate

Michelle Nachand, an SNHU nursing graduate with a BSN and MSN, dressed in a cap and gown at her graduation ceremony.Michelle Nachand's '20 '23MSN journey at Southern New Hampshire University (SNHU) involved earning two degrees while overcoming serious health challenges, including a heart transplant and stage three breast cancer.

But, facing those health challenges during a global pandemic didn't stop Nachand from pursuing her education. She earned her bachelor's in nursing (BSN) in 2020 and a master's in nursing (MSN) in 2023.

Her passion for nursing was sparked by a nurse who inspired her during chemotherapy. Nachand realized that her personal experiences in the healthcare system and her determination to enhance patient care re-enforced her choice to pursue nursing.

Reflecting on her path to the 2023 Commencement, she shared what it meant to reach this milestone. "The whole degree has been a long time coming," Nachand said. "I'm very grateful to be here."

Nachand said she was unable to leave her house for two years because of her health. "(But) it's great to finally be able to be healthy enough to come and finally celebrate everything that I've worked for the last ten years," she said.

As a first-generation graduate, her achievements carry a deeper significance: Inspiring her family. She said that this distinction filled her with happiness and was a testament to her hard work — it also showed her son that he could overcome any obstacles to achieve his dreams.

At Commencement, Nachand offered her gratitude to SNHU. "Thank you for everything you've done for me over the last few years," she said. "You were there when I had my transplant. You were there when I was too sick to turn in my homework. You helped keep my spirit high with your well wishes, and I just can't thank you enough for being there for me."

A degree can change your life. Choose your program from 200+ SNHU degrees that can take you where you want to go.

Nicholas Patterson ’22 is a writer and alumnus of Southern New Hampshire University (SNHU), where he earned his bachelor’s degree in English and creative writing. He is currently honing his craft further as he pursues an MFA in Creative Writing from SNHU. Connect with him on LinkedIn.

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SNHU is a nonprofit, accredited university with a mission to make high-quality education more accessible and affordable for everyone.

Founded in 1932, and online since 1995, we’ve helped countless students reach their goals with flexible, career-focused programs. Our 300-acre campus in Manchester, NH is home to over 3,000 students, and we serve over 135,000 students online. Visit our about SNHU page to learn more about our mission, accreditations, leadership team, national recognitions and awards.