LPN Student Makes, Donates 100 Masks to Hamilton Medical Center


Janet Gonzalez saw news about the shortage of protective gear for nurses and realized she could soon be facing a similar reality.

Gonzalez, who will graduate from Dalton State’s licensed practical nursing (LPN) program in May, wanted to help.

She immediately got to work sewing 100 cloth masks for healthcare workers at Hamilton Medical Center.

“The thought that could be me one day, a nurse without personal protective equipment, made me want to learn to sew a mask,” said Gonzalez, who completed her clinical hours at Hamilton. “So, the decision to help became an easy choice. Within three days I was able to make 100 cloth masks. I have learned during my time in the LPN program to be caring and help when I can. I am praying for all our healthcare workers. I hope this small gesture can help others.”

Gonzalez is a “trunk keeper,” an entrepreneur and owner of a boutique business, for Matilda Jane Clothing. The idea to make cloth masks came from other trunk keepers and several with the company are doing so in their own communities, she said. She also works for Alliant Health Plans.

“It’s incredible to have the support of our community members through this unprecedented event,” said Mickie Hollis, director of Clinical Development Services at Hamilton Medical Center. “We are very appreciative to Janet for taking the time to assist us by making and donating these masks to Hamilton. It is important to have them in the event they would be needed due to the increased need for personal protective equipment.”

Jennifer Parker, the LPN program director, said she is not surprised Gonzalez took the initiative to sew masks.

“Although nursing school is very demanding and requires a lot of time studying, Janet managed to make over 100 masks for her local healthcare community while maintaining her nursing studies – during uncertain times,” Parker said. “This shows how dedicated she is, not only as a student but in her care for others. Her caring heart is a quality that will make her a wonderful nurse and an asset to our profession. I am honored to have her in my class and to soon call her a colleague.”