For Immediate Release January 17, 2022
Carrying the Water
Pittsburgh, Pa.- In 2020, Robert Morris University (RMU) women’s lacrosse team under Coach Katrina Silva was the first team in school history to make the NCAA Tournament. At the end of the season, two starting members of the team, seniors Kelley Flynn and Madison (Madi) Griffin, opted to use their extra year of COVID eligibility to play one more year as graduate students. This is not uncommon across the lacrosse landscape; what is uncommon is the field that both Kelley and Madi are currently navigating working on the frontlines of the COVID-19 pandemic as medical professionals and student athletes.
Uniquely, both Kelley and Madi graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Nursing and a minor in Psychology and are both licensed nurses working in Pittsburgh area hospitals. With the shortage of healthcare workers, especially nurses, the two decided to put their degrees and training to work. Kelley is currently employed and working in the Cardiothoracic Surgical Unit at UPMC Presbyterian Hospital. Madi is currently employed and working in the MedicalSurgical Unit at Allegheny Health Network West Penn Hospital. Both student-athletes are providing care to the sickest of patients while continuing to pursue graduate degrees and playing lacrosse for the RMU women’s lacrosse team. A normal day for Kelley and Madi includes working a 12 hour shift at their respective hospitals caring for COVID patients (many of which are overnight, 7pm – 7am), then returning to campus for an RMU lacrosse morning practice, attending graduate classes in Nursing Education/Leadership, a few naps, then preparing for their next nursing shifts.
Kelley and Madi have been roommates since coming to RMU, but their friendship began in 5th grade when they started playing for the Hero’s Lacrosse Club in Howard County, Maryland. Having spent the last 14 years as friends and teammates both in soccer and lacrosse formed a bond that has prepared them well to support one another through what has been physically and mentally challenging working environments. Being in the profession of nursing has given them both a new perspective on life - how precious it is and how important it is to make every day count. They want to cap off their last year of lacrosse at RMU with a return trip to the NCAA tournament.
Enclosed: Photos of Maddie & Kelley lacrosse and work.
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