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Felipe Santoyo-Cuellar, BSN, RN, PCCN

Felipe Santoyo-Cuellar, BSN, RN, PCCN

While in high school, Felipe concurrently took college classes at PVCC through the ACE program.  He really enjoyed the culture at PVCC and decided to continue his educational journey here due to PVCC’s outstanding nursing program.

Felipe shared, “Everyone at the college was great; most notable were Dr. Denise Digianfilippo, Vice President of Academic Affairs at that time, and the nursing instructors. They have played a huge part in the mentorship portion of my academic endeavors and have guided me through the semesters as a nursing student.” Among Felipe’s most memorable moments were in the nursing simulation building where he attributes acquiring the majority of his skilled assessment techniques and procedures.  Felipe shared, “This left such a positive impression because to this day, as a registered nurse, I am able to follow everything I learned in that lab to ensure excellent patient care through meticulous technique.”

One of the extracurricular activities that left a profound impact on Felipe’s experience was being a co-founder of the Future Health Professionals club, formerly known as Health Occupations Students of America, with Dr. Digianfilippo. “Being a part of its startup at the college was amazing and I truly enjoyed the process and mentorship I received from Dr. Digianfilippo.” Felipe was also active in the Psychology Club, Student Nurses Association, and Phi Theta Kappa Honors Society. Being a member of various clubs enabled him to interact and befriend various people in different fields. Felipe shared, “I was able to understand different viewpoints and practice collaboration skills and teamwork building. I cherished each interaction, as everyone I met shared stories and experiences that have helped me throughout the years.”

Felipe was the recipient of the Presidents’ scholarship, which was a big help in purchasing books and equipment needed for school. He also received various scholarships through other organizations such as the National Association of Hispanic Nurses which helped in making tuition more affordable.

“PVCC has been an incredible experience for me, it is a place that opens many possibilities for you as a student and future leader. I would say, you need to make every experience matter if you truly want to get the best experience out of something.” Felipe’s advice to others, “You should meet with an advisor, see what programs they offer and explore the possibilities. You can also email professors and ask questions about specific programs to get a better understanding of what’s to come. Everyone is willing to help, you just need to reach out and various hands will come your way to help lift you up.”

“PVCC has always been a positive environment that allowed me to grow in confidence. PVCC and the nursing program have instilled in me valuable knowledge that I use today to provide the best quality of care to my patients and their families as a registered nurse.”

Trajectory upon leaving PVCC:
Felipe started as a registered nurse through the Mayo Clinic Nurse Residency Program in 2017 on the Cardiovascular Progressive Care Unit caring for patients with chronic heart failure, heart transplant, pneumonia, heart attacks, and more. He then became a Nurse Preceptor through the Mayo Clinic and has been active in various committees at Mayo in Research, Nursing New Knowledge and Innovation, Wound-Ostomy, and Quality Improvement Projects. He later received his Progressive Care Certification through the American Association of Critical-Care Nurses. Felipe is also the Education Chair on the Board of Directors for the National Association of Hispanic Nurses.  He is completing his Masters of Science in Clinic Systems Leadership at the University of Arizona this December and plans to enroll in their Doctor of Nursing Practice program next spring.