Few things are more professionally rewarding than the admiration of your peers. Take it from Tina Riley.

A nurse at Boston Medical Center – and a Quincy College alumnus – Tina recently received a DAISY Award, which celebrates and recognizes nurses across the country for the care and kindness they provide to their patients. She was nominated by her nursing colleagues on BMC’s Menino 4 West medical-surgical unit.

“I’m humbled and so grateful,” Tina says. “I’ve been a nurse for less than two years so it’s almost surreal. But it isn’t just my award. I couldn’t be the nurse I want to be without the people I work with. The teamwork and camaraderie are amazing.”

Having the opportunity to make a difference is what inspired Tina to become a nurse and she considers it a privilege to practice at BMC. “My eyes have been opened by this patient population,” she says. “I’m there for them clinically but also emotionally, and to advocate for them – that’s my passion.”

Nursing was a delayed vocation for Tina and it took her a while to achieve her goal: 15 years, in fact. Her top priority was being a mom to her two kids, so over the years she progressed from earning certification as a nursing assistant, to completing an Associate’s’ degree in Science, and finally to graduating with an Associate’s in Nursing – all at Quincy College.

“It was a journey for sure, but the college was such a welcoming place and so convenient for me,” says Tina, a lifelong Quincy resident. “I grew there as a student and also as a person. People were always rooting for me. The whole experience was remarkable and I wouldn’t be where I am without Quincy College.”