An interview with Ms. Groveman


Harry Song, Campus Reporter

As many students know, Kent has been reputed to be the ideal place to grow into who we are and who we want to be. The soil nourishing us not only comprises academic challenges and sportsmanship but also the camaraderie of living in a community. 

The past two years of my Kent School life have been enlightening and delightful, and I have to proclaim, “North Dorm the Best Dorm!” Bathrooms aside, North is a great dorm, and the North Dorm faculty have made the dorm lively and enjoyable. 

Among them is Ms. Groveman, a dorm parent who also works in the Health Center as a nurse. During the COVID-19 pandemic, the Health Center has been understandably preoccupied and industrious as students re-acclimate to their boarding life at Kent. I had the honor of interviewing Ms. Groveman to ask about her experience working in this hectic time as well as some questions students have been curious about. Below is the transcript of the interview through which Ms. Groveman’s diligence, care, humor, and wholesome personality reverberate. It gives us some insight into Ms. Groveman’s experience, Kent School life, and the nursing and medical field in general. We greatly appreciate Ms. Groveman’s prompt and pleasurable response. It is great joy working with her.

It has been busy at the health center due to the re-acclimation of students back to campus. What is a typical day like in the health center?
A typical day at the Health Center involves giving daily medications, seeing sick or injured students, answering emails, and following up about students’ wellness needs. These first two weeks back, we have been doing a lot of Covid testing. This past week alone we did over 1,000 Covid tests. Although the testing itself doesn’t take that long, we have to print a test requisition and label for every student and employee and then make up the test kit which becomes time consuming.

Do you miss working in a hospital, the constant excitement, the taxing yet fulfilling night-shifts?
Every once in a while I miss it, but I really like working at Kent! I worked on a liver and kidney transplant unit which was very stressful and chronically understaffed so coming to Kent was a nice change of pace. However, I do miss seeing patients lives change after they receive a transplant. There is nothing quite like witnessing that type of amazing transformation.

Being a dorm parent and working in the health center, you have been perceived as amiable, witty, and caring. How do you juggle all the stress accumulated by work since you basically live at your workplace?

Thank you for your kind words. It can be challenging at times to balance both, but I think my jobs as a nurse in the Health Center and a dorm parent in North are made easier because I genuinely like doing both. It is also nice having summers and breaks off which allows for time to recharge.

What are some of your interests and hobbies? How have you been pursuing them during the COVID-19 pandemic?
I like to bake (although I’m not that great at it) and go for walks with our dog Rylee. I am also really close with my family, so during the pandemic we have been having weekly Zoom calls, which has been a lot of fun. Also, I think, like a lot of people during this pandemic, I have been binge watching a tad too many TV shows.

Students have been awfully fascinated by your relationship with Mr. Harris. How did you two meet? Any romantic moment that you would like to share?
It’s funny that students are fascinated by our relationship. We met in college (go Union!) when a mutual friend was running a haunted house and needed extra actors for it. Mr. Harris was dressed as a scary, gory Santa Claus and I was a zombie, and it wasn’t exactly love at first sight. Fright, maybe. We became friends after that, and then about a year later we started dating!

What is one piece of advice you would give to the Kent students who would like to become involved in nursing or medicine in general?
I think the best piece of advice I would give is to try to volunteer or work in different healthcare settings. You learn a ton on the job and there are so many different ways to work in healthcare/medicine. I was an EMT before I became a nurse, and that experience really helped me to make the decision to continue on to nursing school.