SPRINGFIELD, Vt. – The 16th annual Eileen Austin Neal RN Memorial Scholarship for Nursing of $1,000 was awarded to Victoria Otis of Springfield, Vt., to attend the University of Southern Maine. Tori, as she is called by her friends and family, attended Springfield High School and stated in her application that “I want to be a nurse because I want to be able to help people on their worst days and be able to be there for them on their best days.”
Eileen Austin Neal was a registered nurse at Springfield Hospital for 64 years, retiring in 2005. She was the first recipient of the hospital’s George F. Leland Community Health Award in 2003. In 2004, the hospital established the Eileen Austin Neal Spirit of Nursing Award, given to a staff nurse, in recognition of her many years of dedicated service.
Upon her death in February 2006, at the request of Eileen’s family, Springfield Hospital established the nursing scholarship fund in her name with gifts received in her memory from Eileen’s family as well as from community members.
“For 16 years, the family and friends of Eileen have been very generous in supporting this scholarship and are proud to keep the memory of Eileen alive in this way. Supporting the education of our young people is essential and Springfield Hospital is honored to be a part of awarding this scholarship,” says Sandy Peplau, marketing and development.