Release Date: 
Thursday, September 26, 2019

Lucas Luchonok, longtime HFC facilities employee, begins new career in nursing

HFC Facilities Services employee Lucas Luchonok graduated from the HFC nursing program in May. In October, he leaves HFC to start his nursing career.

Things happened quickly for Lucas Luchonok this fall.

Last spring, he earned his associate degree in nursing from HFC. He took some time after that to consider his career options, do some traveling, and continue working in Facilities Services at HFC. In September, he decided the time had come to make a career move.

On Sept. 17, he sent his résumé to Beaumont Hospital, Dearborn.

On Sept. 19, he received a call from Beaumont about a nursing opening. He interviewed with them that same day.

On Sept. 20, he was offered the nursing position at Beaumont. He accepted. His start date is Oct. 7.

“That really says a lot about the great reputation of HFC’s nursing program,” said Luchonok, an alumnus of Edsel Ford High School in Dearborn.

The lifelong Dearborn resident has worked in HFC Facilities Services for five years. His last day at HFC is Oct. 4.

“HFC has a great nursing program. I took advantage of the benefits here, and got to take classes tuition-free,” said Luchonok. “My first two semesters, I also got professional development reimbursement.”

Breaking a leg led to his career path in nursing

Coming to HFC sparked Luchonok’s interest in nursing in a very indirect way. Luchonok played football for Albion College for three years, but suffered an injury. Feeling unsure of what field to pursue, Luchonok left Albion and returned to Dearborn to reevaluate his priorities.

Shortly after coming to work at HFC, he broke his leg. While recuperating, Luchonok met a nurse who inspired him to go into nursing.

“This guy really enjoyed what he was doing,” said Luchonok. “He made me realize that I wanted to do something in the health field.”

After completing physical therapy for his leg, Luchonok began taking general education classes at HFC in 2016. A year later, he began taking classes in the nursing program.

“Lucas was the type of student that every instructor dreams of. He was respectful, he took ownership when he did something wrong, and he genuinely cared about his patients and his peers. I wish him the best of luck. I am so proud to have been part of his journey,” said Cathy Gangarossa, HFC nursing instructor.

Luchonok completed his clinicals at Beaumont’s locations in Dearborn, Taylor, and Wayne, as well as St. John’s Providence Hospital in Southfield.

“Human Resources, Facilities Services, and the Support Staff Association were very helpful and allowed me to change my work schedule to take classes here,” said Luchonok.

Gaining experience and confidence

After graduating from HFC, Luchonok went to Europe, traveling to Barcelona, Berlin, and New Amsterdam.

“This was my gift to myself after graduation,” he said. “I’d never been anywhere outside the United States, besides Canada. I wanted to see the rest of the world.”

Upon his return, Luchonok devoted his energies to finding a full-time job in nursing. To keep his options open, he applied to eight different divisions in three different hospitals. As it turns out, he only needed one.

At Beaumont Dearborn, he’ll work in the nursing progressive surgical unit and gain experience in the following specialty areas:
• Progressive care surgical urology
• Abdominal surgery
• Bariatric surgery
• Peripheral vascular procedures
• Other general surgical post-operation needs

“It’s a good floor to start out and enhance my skills. It’s a great introduction to the nursing field. It’ll be a fast-paced learning environment, that’s for sure,” he said. “If I had to put down a No. 1 choice, it would be this one. It just so happens, Beaumont Dearborn was the first to call me for an interview, and the first to make an offer. I figured it was fate; I was very excited to accept.”

Relationships at HFC will last

While he’s excited to move on and begin work in his chosen career path, Luchonok will miss his colleagues and instructors at HFC.

“I’ll miss the people here,” he said. “I’ve made a lot of good relationships here in the past five years. It has a nice team environment. I know someone in every building. I can just stop in, say hi, and chat.”

Reuben Brukley, HFC Facilities Services interim director, and Steve Gary, HFC Facilities Services supervisor, both said they’ll miss Luchonok.

“Lucas always did a good job. Anything we assigned him, he’d take care of it without any issues. We could always count on him. He’ll definitely be missed,” said Gary.

Added Brukley: “I hired Lucas in 2014. Having worked with him in the years since, I can state with certainty that Lucas is of outstanding character. He has been professional, reliable, and diligent in his service to the College. I am grateful to Lucas for all of the times he has stepped up and delivered over the years. The Facilities Services department is sad to see Lucas moving on, but also happy for his accomplishments. We offer our congratulations and wish him the best of luck in his new career.”

We hope to see Lucas on campus as his schedule permits in the future. For more information about HFC's excellent nursing program, visit the nursing program website.