Jan Greenberg

Jan Greenberg graduated from high school in 1945 and was already scheduled to enter the Cadet Nurse Corps at Newton Wellesley Hospital but the war ended before classes got started. Each student was immediately contacted and assured that the end of hostilities did nothing to ease the critical shortage of nurses. She was still needed as other personnel would be transferred to military and veterans hospitals.

"We would often work second and third shifts with no supervision of RNs," she noted, and had to balance that with the demands of accelerated classes.

But it was everything an aspiring future nurse could hope for, an opportunity that might not have been possible except for the government program and she was determined to make the best of it.

Coming to Foxboro in 1950, Jan did floor duty at Sturdy Memorial Hospital in Attleboro and served throughout the facility.

An unusual opportunity presented itself when the Department of Mental Health opened Walnut Lodge, once part of the state farm on Walnut Street, as a geriatrics nursing home. The purpose was to create a model of care for the elderly just as the nursing home industry began to gain momentum. It was a unique experience, in that she served geriatrics clients as well as patients from the Foxborough State Hospital.

Having had psychiatric training in addition to nursing, she asked for a transfer with the opening for her specialty in the Dexter Building, the hospital unit of the state hosptial. She worked there for many years until transferred to the Brockton Multi Service Center at Taunton in 1970. As the operation of the Foxboro facility was closing down, the Taunton unit closed and Jan retired after 30 years of service with the state.

She launched a volunteer involvement with Operation Reassurance, making daily phone calls to check on local seniors that lasted 20 years.

-adapted from The Foxboro Reporter, Thursday, November 12, 2009, p. 5

Last Name in Nursing School: 
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Cadet Nurse
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Newton Wellesley Hospital, Massachusetts
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Portrait of Jan Greenberg