The smallest of actions can create a rippling wave of change for the future. These following submissions truly embrace the Altaire dream. We would love your help in choosing the winner for our first Altaire Scholarship recipient. Please vote below for the individual you would like to see this $2,000 scholarship go towards. Voting is limited to once per day and will close July 31st.
Has someone close to you ever been diagnosed with cancer? There is nothing that can prepare you for the debilitating news that a loved one has been diagnosed. I know this first hand as I have felt it on not one, but two occasions. Experiencing this twice has made me aware of the importance of accessible healthcare. My mother was diagnosed with Hodgkin’s Lymphoma in 2008. Luckily, she had routine checkups with a nurse practitioner who diagnosed it early. My mother lived close to a treatment facility so she was able to start chemotherapy immediately. Six months later, she was cancer free. My grandfather, on the other hand, lived in rural Montana, three hours away from the closest hospital or clinic. Last September, when he finally got an appointment for his persistent shoulder pain, he was diagnosed with Stage IV lung cancer. It took his life in October. Both of these experiences, one a triumph over cancer and one an incredible loss to the disease, were two of the most powerful motivators driving me to apply to North Dakota State University’s Doctorate of Nursing Practice Program. It is my dream, not only to see the accessibility of quality health care expand but also to personally play a role in that expansion.
Ever since I can remember, I have desired a career in medicine. My mother, as a nurse, has been a role model for my career path. I enrolled in Concordia College’s Nursing Program and soon discovered my passion for helping those in need. During my clinical rotations, the area I felt most drawn to was critical care. The complexity of illnesses and acuity of patients’ needs challenged me to constantly learn. After graduating from Concordia College, I wanted to fully immerse myself in an environment where I could attain expertise for career advancement. I decided that the best place to attain skills and knowledge was in critical care.
I started my professional career as an intensive care nurse at Sanford Hospital in Fargo, North Dakota. During my three years in the ICU, I have grown so much as both a nurse and as a person. I have demonstrated extensive knowledge of multiple disease states and a strong skill set in the various medications and products to treat them. I collaborate with physicians and other medical staff to plan integrated and holistic patient care, which aligns with patient and family needs. I educate patients and families in the areas of medication, safety, prevention, and symptom management. I respect differing cultural and religious practices while providing care to diverse populations. In addition, I have instructed and mentored students and new staff members in critical care nursing. Overall, I strive to deliver excellent care to acutely ill patients who are in vulnerable and fragile states. I believe my experiences, attributes, and skills not only make me a strong candidate to receive Altaire’s Make a Difference NDSU Scholarship, but it will also shape me into an excellent nurse practitioner someday.
It is no secret that communities are suffering the terrible consequence of nursing shortages nationwide. I support NDSU’s mission to advance nursing knowledge and develop dynamic nurse leaders who can provide quality, accessible health care to underserved, rural, and diverse populations. My health care experiences, both personal and professional, have inspired me to become a nurse practitioner. I believe that anything is possible through hard work, dedication, and a passion to change our communities for the better. I have always been an individual who likes challenges; becoming a nurse practitioner is the next challenge in my life. It would be such an honor to be chosen to receive Altaire’s Make a Difference NDSU Scholarship towards my education at NDSU’s Doctorate of Nursing PracticeProgram. Should I be accepted, I would apply my education toward improving the accessibility of quality healthcare so that someday we can rest assured that more patients’ stories end like my mothers no matter their geographic location, race, religion, or income level.
Growing up in a constant state of survival mode presented many challenges for me as a young person. A lack of parental support and guidance during my developmental years made success a seemingly impossible feat. Although I lived in poverty and spent much of my high school years couch surfing due to unstable home life, I still became one of very few in my family to graduate high school. Through perseverance, I have overcome many roadblocks and hardships. My resilience and determination have not ceased. I began my nursing career as a licensed practical nurse to support my college education and myself. Thereafter, I completed a Bachelor of Science in nursing at NDSU and successfully graduated cum laude. Now, as an adult, I am an active, contributing member to my community, a role model, and an aspiring provider to others. I am currently pursuing a Doctorate in Nursing Practice at NDSU while, simultaneously, serving as a clinical instructor for undergraduate NDSU nursing students. I find immense joy and satisfaction by investing in the future of nursing. In the past, I have been a community educator and worked in the clinic setting focusing both on education and prevention caring for a diverse, high-risk population. Presently, I maintain employment in the hospital and utilize a wide range of nursing skills. In the many healthcare settings I have been employed, I have been able to use my leadership skills, integrity, and work ethic to provide the best care possible for my patients.
In both the clinic and hospital, I have had the privilege to collaborate and consult with nurse practitioners daily, which has provided me a model to emulate and a goal to pursue. As a nurse practitioner, I aim to connect with my patients based on my personal and professional encounters caring for people in most stages of life with differing needs. In all facets, I have been able to develop rapport easily and naturally providing an open channel for communication and understanding. I firmly believe these are the foundational blocks for any relationship, in particular, one between a healthcare provider and a patient.
Advancing my education is rooted in my interest in health promotion through prevention, as it is the primary tool for eliminating health disparities and co-morbidities. Health promotion is an area of healthcare that needs more attention. As a nurse practitioner, my goal is to serve a rural community in a public health sector focusing on prevention strategies. A graduate nursing degree from NDSU is allowing me to come full circle by providing care to the underserved and underprivileged, as I once was.
My career inspires me to feel a sense of accountability and compassion. Being a nurse has provided me a solid base of morals and values in conjunction with setting an example for others. Being a healthcare provider is what I am meant to do. I have the drive to acquire and develop the prowess needed to provide all-encompassing care to my patients. And above all else, I am eager for the responsibility and pride that is so deserving of a nurse practitioner.
Obtaining an advanced degree will allow me to make a difference by significantly contributing to my patients, their families, the community and the healthcare profession. Furthermore, with a scholarship from Altaire clinic, the financial burden of graduate school will be lessened to allow for more energy and time to be devoted to my education. Investing in my career and education will allow me to fulfill my aspiration of reaching my fullest potential. I will make a difference by continuing to empower others to do the same.