Business offices are often seen as a home for number crunchers and bottom lines. Their role in an organization is to keep the institution soluble. The question for those coming to a business office is to determine whether there is a human face behind the financial services. The ongoing story of Jessica and her family demonstrate that nurture is alive and well in the Financial Services Office of Florida Hospital College.
“Our whole world was in pieces,” remembers Jessica, a nursing student at FHCHS. “My husband, Sid, had just been diagnosed with cancer five weeks after my first class began.”
Jessica, who has two children, decided to study nursing after having lost her brother to cancer. Inspired by the care he received at Florida Hospital, she had enrolled at FHCHS in the fall of 2003.
“I remember, after we received my husband’s diagnosis, I took a fifty dollar check to the Financial Services Office,” Jessica says. “As a one-income family, I knew we couldn’t afford for me to be in school. I just wanted to tell them that I didn’t know how or when we could pay for the semester, but we would pay somehow.”
Jessica took her check and her heavy burden to Lynda Swanson, Assistant Director of Financial Aid.
“Jessica and I just connected right away,” says Swanson. “She had such a passion for what she wanted to study and become.”
Swanson listened to Jessica, prayed with her, and then she took her story to the Financial Services staff meeting.
“The next thing I knew,” says Jessica, “Bob Curren, the CFO of the College, wanted to meet me. I went to his office, and he shared his own story—how he lost his first wife to cancer. He promised me that I would be able to stay in school. He told me that we would work together to accomplish my goals.”
From that day forward, the Financial Services Office took Jessica’s family under its wing. The staff gave gifts for Christmas and birthdays, prayed with Sid during chemotherapy treatments at Florida Hospital, offered encouragement, and a listening ear.
“I have just always known that these people would be there for us,” says Jessica. “My family would not be here now without their support.”
Today, Sid’s prognosis is very good, and Jessica will graduate this December from FHCHS with an Associate degree in nursing. However, this is not the end of the story. As the Bible promises, “You’re blessed when you care. At the moment…you find yourselves cared for.” (Matthew 5, The Message)
“Jessica and her family brought our whole Department together,” Swanson says. “I pray every day now that God will bring someone into my office that I can help.”
One might expect that names and stories would get lost in piles of paperwork and the push of deadlines. “But there is so much more to financial services than the numbers,” explains Curren. “Getting to know Jessica’s family changed the whole way we do business. Ultimately, when we gave, we received so much more in return.”
For more information visit Financial Services.