We are proud to announce FOUR talented and deserving award recipients for this year’s ACNM annual meeting student scholarship.
Jennifer Almanza has been partnering with moms and babies for over 20 years. At age 19, she began to attend births as a culture-centric doula working mainly with teens from the Latinx and African diaspora and the sovereign Native nations. After working both independently and for the Turtle Women Doula Project, Jennifer attended nursing school, graduating in 2005. Since earning her RN she has worked as an L&D and SCN nurse at Regions Hospital and as a high risk pregnancy case manager with HealthPartners. In 2015 Jennifer was awarded a Bush Leadership Fellowship to pursue her lifelong dream of becoming a community-based midwife and is currently in her 2nd year at the University of Minnesota, Doctorate of Nursing in midwifery program. Deeply interested in how thoughtful policy can impact disparate US maternal outcomes, she is involved with a powerhouse research team at the University of Minnesota’s School of Public Health and Health Policy Management that seeks to understand and mitigate racial disparities in women’s obstetric health in Minnesota and the nation. Jennifer volunteers on several boards and organizations including; Indigenous Roots, American College of Nurse Midwives, and Minnesota Birthworkers of Color. Living on the west side of St. Paul for the past 20 years, Jennifer hopes to continue to serve her community as a midwife for years to come.
Dominique Jones was called to midwifery after working with women, children, and families for years as a case manager. Through midwifery, she plans to work to empower women and families by walking along side these individuals to build trust, strength, self-advocacy, and well as share knowledge. Dominique seeks to build relationships with women from an early age to empower them to take control of their physical, mental, sexual and reproductive health. She plans to engage change at the institution and policy level, to be an advocate for full scope midwifery care, for advancing the midwifery profession, and protecting the rights of women.
Dominique wants engage in research into how our system disadvantages minority women, and provided evidence of how this hurts the whole in order to ensure equitable care and quality of life. Dominique is excited to attend the 62nd Annual ACNM meeting for the opportunity to learn more about avenues of scholarship and quality improvement as well as to connect with midwives from across the county.
Maria Fernanda Honebrink
Maria born and raised in Ambato, Ecuador. She attended “La Escuela de Obstetricia” (Obstetrics school – Midwifery school) in Quito, Ecuador prior to moving to the United States.
When the US opened its doors to her, she wondered how she could continue to do the work that she loved. She did some research and learned about the field of Nurse-Midwifery. A light shone on her future because the role of a nurse-midwife is so similar to that of an Obstetriz in Ecuador. For her, becoming a nurse-midwife was the way to bring together her past, present and future knowledge, training, experience and dreams.
Once she graduated from nursing school she began working at “La Clinica,” a Federally Qualified Health Center in Saint Paul, Minnesota. There, she had the opportunity to work alongside several nurse-midwives and saw firsthand the great need that exists for bilingual and culturally sensitive healthcare providers. She knew then that her new goal in life was to become a Certified Nurse-Midwife and offer holistic and culturally sensitive care to all her future patients and their families.
She has been working towards her goal of becoming a nurse-midwife for several years. She is currently in her last semester of the Masters in nurse-midwifery program at Bethel University. Her anticipated graduation date is May 28th, 2017. She is very excited and hopeful for what her future holds. She can’t wait to share with her new patients and their families the wonderful miracle of life!
Jenni is currently a 3rd out of 4 year midwifery student working on her Doctor of Nursing Practice degree at the University of Minnesota. In her spare time she enjoys hiking, photography, kayaking, and exploring the Duluth area. Her time as a nurse has been devoted to working in Native American communities in the Northern Minnesota area. Her hopes upon graduation are to work as a nurse-midwife within one of the same communities. Going to the ACNM Annual Conference in Chicago this year, she looks forward to being a part of a community of women who share the same passions!