Nursing school is a great experience. It's much more research-oriented than I thought it would be. We really focus on the "big picture" -- I'm not just learning technical skills. It's a very intellectually stimulating environment where we all share the same ideals of nursing and helping others. I have always wanted to help underserved areas of society. I was in the Peace Corps in West Africa, and near the end of my assignment I began contemplating what to do when I returned to the U.S. I knew I wanted a career in which I helped people, but didn't know exactly how to turn that dream into reality. Then I saw an ad in a magazine for the Johns Hopkins School of Nursing and wondered if that might be the pathway I was looking for and, as it turns out, it definitely was. Nursing is such a great opportunity because of the all the different specialties you can pursue and the work schedule flexibility. It's the perfect career for me because it combines science with people skills. After receiving my BSN, I plan to earn a master's degree as a Family Nurse Practitioner and one day open a clinic for the underprivileged. I love volunteer work and community outreach and am very excited that I will be able to fulfill my passion through a gratifying, well-paying career.