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Established in 2018, the Rhodes State College Alumni Circle of Excellence recognizes Associate Degree graduates of Rhodes State College and Lima Technical College who are doing exceptional work in their career field, community and for the College.


Trina D. Carter, Associate of Applied Science, Nursing – 2013

      Ms. Carter is continually looking for “opportunities to build leadership skills, improve processes, mentor junior nurses, and provide compassionate and effective care to her patients.”
      After completing her associate’s degree at Rhodes State, Ms. Carter has gone on to achieve her BSN at the Kettering College of Medical Arts in 2016, and she successfully completed the Clinical Nurse Specialist master’s degree program at Kent State University in 2019. She returned to Rhodes State to serve as an instructor in 2019.
      Ms. Carter is an avid volunteer and now travels to help other medical facilities with pandemic-created staffing issues. She has recently done a 4-month assignment in California to help with the treatment of COVID-19 patients.
      Throughout her career, Ms. Carter has received recognition for her patient and colleague encouragement efforts. In 2017, she was the Daisy Award Recipient from Mercy Health – St. Rita’s Hospital. She also takes part in many evidence-based practice presentations and research for the medical community. 


Robert M. Fischnich, Associate of Applied Science, Quality Engineering Technology – 1999

      Mr. Fischnich credits Lima Technical College (LTC) for providing “a solid academic framework to build upon over the last 20+ years.” It was at LTC that he learned that “quality” is a characteristic that everyone cares about, but it is often not thought about until it is lacking. In his profession, Mr. Fischnich strives to ensure that the quality of products remains high and, thus, “hidden.”
      While at LTC, Mr. Fischnich attained the American Society for Quality (ASQ) Certified Quality Engineer Certification in 1999. He went on to achieve the International Quality Institute (I-Q-I) Six Sigma Black Belt in 2005 and his Bachelor of Arts in Organizational Leadership and Supervision from Defiance College in 2006. In 2008, he became an ASQ Certified Manager of Quality & Organizational Excellence, and in 2012, became an I-Q-I Master Black Belt.
      Mr. Fischnich remains connected to Rhodes State College, serving as an Adjunct Instructor, and on the IET/QET Advisory Committee. He has also been a lifelong member of the Veterans of Foreign Wars, is a 4th Degree Knight of Columbus, and past Grand Knight of Council 5669. 


 Nicholas J. Pratt, Associate of Applied Science, Nursing – 2014

      Academic excellence, community service, professional leadership, personal growth and vocational commitment define the journey of Mr. Nicholas Pratt. After achieving his associate’s degree in nursing, Mr. Pratt went on to become a Medical Oncology Nurse at Blanchard Valley Health System and then a Critical Care Nurse at Lima Memorial Health System. Soon after, he discovered a desire to become a Medical Doctor.
      In 2016, Mr. Pratt earned his Bachelor of Science in Nursing from The Ohio State University. In 2018, he earned a Bachelor of Science in Health Sciences from Cleveland State University, summa cum laude. It is projected that he will culminate his studies at Northeast Ohio Medical University (NEOMED) and become a Doctor of Medicine in 2022.
      Throughout his educational and clinical career, Mr. Pratt has maintained his connection to Rhodes State College. He has been an invited lecturer in allied health and nursing courses, an alumni presenter at the annual Scholarship Reception, and a volunteer at RSC Career Day. He holds leadership positions in the American Academy of Emergency Medicine as well as student leadership positions at NEOMED.
      According to Mr. Pratt, “My time at Rhodes State College has provided a firm foundation for my medical studies and towards my future career as a physician. It provided me with hands-on, real-world experience. I am extremely grateful and look forward to future service to the college and our community.”


Circle of Excellence Archive

Award Year Alum Degree Graduation Year
2018 Daniel Fultz Technical Studies 1978
2018 Christine Joseph Nursing 1978
2018 J. Kathryn Lukey Nursing 1978
2018 Nancy Rhinock Law Enforcement 1994
2018 Nancy Shuffle Dental Hygiene 1995
2019 Jill Hay Dental Hygiene 1992
2019 Robert A. Shappell Radiographic Imaging 1980
2019 Russell L. Martin Law Enforcement 1978
2019 Benjamin B. Stobbe Nursing 1987
2020 Linda A. Dodge Respiratory Care 1999
2020 Aaron M. McLaurine Electrical Engineering Technology 1995
2020 Katy I. Murphy Human Service 2006
2020 Dr. Lee Anne Sorto Nursing 2008
2020 Tracy K. Smith Respiratory Care 1990
2021 Trina D. Carter Nursing 2013
2021 Robert M. Fischnich Quality Engineering Technology 1999
2021 Nicholas J. Pratt Nursing 2014