Alumni Spotlight: Maral Aghazarian Borkowski, BSN Class of 2013

May 20, 2021

Published in the May/June edition of Roseman University’s print edition of spectRum magazine.

By Brenda Griego

Roseman nursing alumna Maral Borkowski earned her undergraduate degree in biology at UC Irvine, where she conducted genetics research and volunteered for a clinical care extender program at an area hospital. Through that experience, she served on a medical surgical floor and in the ER.

“That volunteer experience is where I fell in love with medicine and, more specifically, nursing,” she notes. “The nursing staff were so supportive, and I loved that their care was so closely related to patients’ outcomes. The nurses spent a full twelve hours with patients and were the doctors’ eyes, ears, and hands.”

When she knew nursing was for her, she unsuccessfully tried switching her major, and then applied to other universities, but only got as close as a two- to three-year wait list.

“Luckily, one of my friends told me about Roseman. When I got accepted, I was so excited to start my nursing journey!”

When asked what is special about Roseman, she immediately responds: “I loved that EVERYONE had to get a 90% or better to pass! That intimidated me at first, but it was a great concept because instead of competing against each other for the top grade, each cohort studied and worked together. Your cohort becomes like a family as you work through test days, clinicals, and finally graduation.”

She continues, “That learning process was beneficial post-graduation too because now as a practicing RN, when my patients are settled, I look to see if anyone else needs help. Whether in school or on the job, we all have to work together to keep afloat and provide the best care we can.”

While in the BSN program, Maral participated in the Student Nurse Association and Nursing Honor Society, and she enjoyed volunteering at community events, going to an SNA conference, and hiking with dental & pharmacy students.

Did she have a favorite experience? “Clinicals were my favorite because of the patients and nurse mentors, and the best clinical was my preceptorship. My second preceptor was AMAZING! I still keep in touch with her, and she will forever be my ‘nursing mommy,’” she says with a big smile.

After graduating and passing her NCLEX, Maral began working at Kindred Sahara and later Southern Hills Hospital on the Medical Surgical Unit, where she took on new roles like nurse leader rounding and relief charge. Her current position is in the ER at Spring Valley Hospital. In the ER, she explains, some days are “manageable and smooth, others are chaotic and stressful” but patients get superior care from Maral and her co-workers. “Everyone I work with calls me the energizer bunny because I’m always zipping around and helping whenever I can.”

What’s next for Maral? “There are many certifications I want to get to enhance my understanding of emergency medicine, but I’ve also been expanding my family roles! I am the wife of a very dedicated paramedic and the mother of two amazing boys and one chunky beagle.”

Maral feels deep appreciation for those who helped her on her journey. “Thanks to my parents, my husband, and my cohort, I succeeded in my goal. With the continued support of my home and work family, I feel like wherever my nursing journey takes me, I will always have a solid foundation and support.”

14 | Spring 2021