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Graduate Student Elizabeth A. Custodio Receives Suzanne Renée Leider Award

Graduate Student Elizabeth A. Custodio Receives Suzanne Renée Leider Award

Elizabeth A. Custodio, BSN, RN, CPN, MS ’18, a graduate student in the UCI Family Nurse Practitioner program, is the recipient of the 2018 Suzanne Renee Leider Award. Custodio is recognized for her leadership and guidance.

Presented during the 9th Annual Suzanne Renée Leider Lecture, held April 26, the award is dedicated to the memory of an extraordinary nurse, whose passion for the profession lives on through UCI’s nursing programs. 

“Elizabeth demonstrates the nursing leadership, empathy and academic achievement that would make Suzanne Renée Leider proud,” said Dean Adey Nyamathi.  “She exemplifies excellence in nursing and is a valued member of our nursing school community.”

Custodio did not always dream of being a nurse. Originally, she pursued a career in biomedical research at UC Irvine. It wasn’t until her final undergraduate year, through a hospital volunteer program, that she inadvertently found her calling. 

After receiving a bachelor’s degree in biology, Custodio obtained an accelerated bachelor’s degree in nursing science from California State University San Marcos and was licensed as a registered nurse. In 2012, she was accepted by the Children’s Hospital of Orange County’s registered nurse residency program as the only new graduate hired into the highly specialized preoperative unit. With effortless empathy and cultural consciousness, Custodio thrived – helping to establish the current perianesthesia protocol for autistic patients and earning certification as a pediatric nurse.

Five years of experience later, Custodio’s goals evolved from acute patient care into health promotion and disease prevention for all ages. She currently is pursuing national certification as a family nurse practitioner and will graduate with a master’s degree from the UCI Sue & Bill Gross School of Nursing in June 2018.