For these nursing professionals, nursing is more than just a job. They were eager to share their stories with Nursing Notes about what nursing means and why they remain committed to their profession.
Kathleen M. Maguire, RN, BSN, MSN, MA, School Health Coordinator
The School District of Philadelphia
As a teenager, I began to work in the community hospital as a nurse's aid. I was both thrilled and overwhelmed with the need and shortage of nurses at that time. I enjoyed the patient contact, the learning and the overall experience. I had no second thoughts when applying to college to pursue my career.
I learned early on that nursing is a continuous learning process and recognized that I needed to further my education in order to educate others. The nursing field has changed and continues to grow through research and evidence-based practices.
I continue to work as a nurse although in a different specialty than is commonly sought. My main focus of work is in school nursing. Everyday there are challenges to overcome in working with children, families, schools and the public health system. Sometimes it is a struggle, but the rewards are many.
Sarah Angermuller, RN, MSN
Medical Center Hospital
I did not have the opportunity to fulfill my dream of becoming a nurse until later in life because I married and dropped out of school. Fortunately, I was able to complete my high school education shortly after having a child, but was financially unable to enter a nursing program. It was during my husband’s illness and eventual death that I began to think seriously about entering a nursing program. After observing the compassion of the nurses who were assigned to his daily care, my goal of becoming a nurse was rekindled. Eight months later, I was accepted to an ADN program.
There are many needs for nurses in all settings. After three months of retirement, I was ready to return to work where I am still employed as a part-time nurse faculty member working with students in the clinical setting. I have also been employed as a PRN staff nurse for nearly 25 years now. Retirement is not an option for me yet. Retired nurses may feel they will get lost in the technical aspects of machines and computers that are now present in most health facilities. I suggest that the retired nurse who may have these feelings, express these concerns in the interview process with a willingness to learn.
JERRY LUCAS, RN
Norton Audubon Hospital
I started as a combat medic in the Army and from there was offered the chance to enter the combat nursing program. After leaving the Army, I completed my nursing education and became a nurse.
I was at Ground Zero in New York City 12 hours after the planes hit the World Trade Center, in Biloxi after Hurricane Katrina came ashore and in Lake Charles when Hurricane Rita struck. My job has changed my life in so many ways.
After taking a good look at the real work involved in the field of nursing, you can see that nursing allows you so many different areas in which to work. Nursing will give back to you all that you put in.
In my experience as a nurse, I have found that more and more patients have been happy to have a male nurse care for them. As owner and publisher of MaleNurseMagazine.com, I try to help both men and women understand just how much nursing needs them. I enjoy the nursing profession because at the end of the day, I know I have made a difference in someone’s life.