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A Janitor Just Received His Nursing Degree From The University Where He Once Cleaned Bathrooms

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The recent graduate's inspiring story is teaching others the true meaning of determination.

Frank Baez was only a teenager when he began cleaning rooms at New York University's Langone Tisch Hospital.

But after 14 years of hard work and dedication, Baez is now returning as a registered nurse.


At the age of 15 Frank Baez and his mother moved from the Dominican Republic to build a life in New York City. But it would be an uphill climb starting out for Frank who found work as a janitor at NYU's Tisch Hospital.

"I could barely speak English at the time when I started working at NYU," said Baez, though obstacles were no match for his determination.

Baez, 29 began working in housekeeping at the hospital—cleaning bathrooms, patient rooms and hallways

Frank developed an interest in the medical field and applied for a position as a patient transporter where he would chat with patients as he ferried them throughout the hospital.

Eventually Baez left NYU to finish his bachelor's degree at Hunter College. Frank always knew though that one day he wanted to return to NYU.

On Monday, Frank's wish came true.

According to Baez while he was still at NYU he was inspired by the nurses he worked alongside.

"I realized I wanted to be one of them," Baez said. "I learned how much they advocate for their patients and the passion they have for their job."

The nurses encouraged Frank to apply to the NYU Rory Meyers College of Nursing where Baez joined an accelerated program that earned him his nursing degree in just 15 months.

Soon enough Baez was graduating from the University where he had originally began working as a janitor over 14 years ago.

"I was never an A student," Baez said. "I just studied a lot and worked a lot"

In the end all of that hard work paid off.

"Frank didn't just kind of make the program, barely getting through. He flew through it with flying colors," said Natalya Pasklinsky, director of simulation learning at the college of nursing.

Baez graduated the program with a 3.6 GPA and in Pasklinsky's opinion is going to make an excellent nurse.

"The way he interacted with patients, to me showed a lot of compassion," Pasklinsky said. "In my mind, he's a star. I think he's going to be a fantastic nurse."

As far as feel good stories go it is hard to top Baez's inspiring tale of hard work and determination.







Baez's story is an incredible example of what people can accomplish when they put their minds to it.

And for those working hard towards their own goals Baez shared some simple advice.

"What I did was, I never gave up."

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