Skip to main content

Edson College announces nominees for ASU Salute to Service spotlights

Three images of Edson College Salute to Service through Service nominees

Edson College Salute to Service through Service nominees from left to right, Cheryl Schmidt, Aliria Muñoz Rascón and Natalie Heywood.

November 06, 2020

For nearly a decade, ASU has honored those who have served and contributed to our nation's defense. This tradition was aligned with Veteran’s Day on Nov. 11 and developed under the banner ASU Salute to Service.

This November is no exception, as we broaden the focus to include people in fields such as education, medicine, nursing and other essential workers who have stepped up during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Edson College is proud to announce its nominees for this year's spotlight.

Cheryl Schmidt, clinical professor in Edson College, is an Army veteran, is active in the Red Cross and has volunteered in every COVID-19 community, public health and ASU opportunity for testing. This includes specimen collection for nasal and saliva testing, as well as serving as command lead for community-based Sero-Survey testing. Through her service and dedication she has personally impacted student learning, consumers of health services, community and ASU colleagues, and contributed to high visibility, high priority public health initiatives.

Natalie Heywood is a clinical assistant professor in Edson College. She served as co-lead for the ASU-Community Partner Drive through coronavirus testing that began in March 2020. Natalie led the expansion of drive-through testing by traveling to remote areas of Arizona and New Mexico over several weeks to support the development of drive-through testing. Access to testing would have otherwise not been available to underserved and Native American Communities without her leadership.

As a faculty member, she quickly revised a capstone course for RN-BSN students to support their direct participation in the Maricopa Department of Public Health Sero-Survey in collaboration with ASU, Maricopa Department of Public Health and Mayo Clinic. She is now leading an ASU initiative in collaboration with ASU Health Services to support ASU students who have tested positive to COVID-19. In addition to maintaining a full teaching workload, she has been in the field regularly since April 2020 contributing to COVID-19 initiatives. Her volunteerism has impacted student learning, ASU student health, the health of underserved and Native American populations and the health of the greater community.

Aliria Muñoz Rascón is a clinical associate professor in Edson College. She is also a critical care nurse, who, in response to the coronavirus epidemic developed a free, seven-module online course, designed to uptrain non-ICU nurses to the ICU setting. By mid-July, there were more than 1,295 registered nurses enrolled in this program, which helped nurses to transition and enable them to care for Covid-19 patients. Along with other faculty members from the college, Aliria worked with ed tech company, Sana Labs, to design a training program to transition nurses at New York City’s Mount Sinai Hospital into critical care on short notice.

Learn more about ASU’s Salute to Service.