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Lehigh Carbon Community College

By Suzy Alstrin

Just as her mother Joyce Daniel (RU – 2001) succeeded in earning a degree from Reinhardt in her 40s, Mary Beth Botts (RU – 2024) looks forward to graduating this May at age 43. Not only has she earned a bachelor’s degree in nursing but she serves as president of her nursing cohort and an inductee of the Sigma Theta Tau International Honor Society. She represented her cohort at faculty meetings and served as a student representative of the nursing program. On Kindness Day, she organized making goodie baskets to spread the message of community to businesses near the Cauble School of Nursing in Jasper, Georgia.  

Botts started her healthcare career at age 17 as a CNA, but six years later, she put her nursing aspiration aside and prioritized her family’s needs and goals. Botts and her husband served as missionaries, taught English abroad, and homeschooled their three children. In turn, her family’s instrumental support during her studies at Reinhardt helped her succeed, “I’ve done some difficult things in my life and this by far was the most challenging. It requires you to push yourself to the limits knowing that you have the ability to save a life and you also can lose a life.”  

While achieving an associate of applied science degree at Chattahoochee Technical College, she is grateful to that school’s president for recommending Reinhardt’s nursing program, “The professors at Reinhardt are passionate about teaching and have strong convictions about us applying ethics and morals in all that we do. They have done an amazing job preparing us for the profession. They pushed us to excel.” 

Her professors reciprocate this appreciation. “Mary Beth is a leader who is passionate about advocacy. She inspires others to fight complacency. This passion will help her improve the lives of her patients and the quality of healthcare,” says Kimberlin Zelinsky, Assistant Professor and Program Coordinator for the Cauble School of Nursing.  

Botts strives to build a center to help adults with disabilities and special needs that is inclusive of the community. She accepted a job in the progressive care unit at Piedmont Cartersville Hospital and plans to seek a master’s degree in health care administration. She says she is fulfilling her dream, “I want to be an excellent nurse and make a difference in my community.”