By: Sarah Marble/Co-Senior Feature Editor
2020 is the Year of the Nurse. It just so happens it is also the year with a global pandemic; a time when nurses are needed now more than ever despite the already shortage of nurses.
The class of 2020 holds 4 seniors who are ready to answer the call and enter the nursing field after continuing their educations. They include Alison Marshman, Bailey Allen, Karin Dunbar, and myself, Sarah Marble. Each senior has a different story, but their drive to join the front line is the same.
I asked each of the girls five questions, and although their answers were different, they all shared a common theme: a passion to help others.
PLANS AFTER HIGH SCHOOL?
Dunbar explained that she is planning to become a Registered Nurse and earn a position in a Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU).
Allen stated that she is planning on getting her Licenced Practical Nurse (LPN) certification through the educational program at Elk Lake School District and hoping to later become a Registered Nurse.
Marshman is planning to attend Penn State Scranton to earn her Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN), then continue to University Park to figure out what she wants to do.
I am also attending Penn State Scranton to earn my BSN to become a Registered Nurse. I am also interested in furthering my education after gaining work experience to earn my Master’s of Science in Nursing (MSN) to earn my master’s degree and become a Nurse Practitioner and work in women’s health.
WHY CHOOSE THE NURSING FIELD?
Dunbar stated, “I’ve always wanted to help people, and what better way than through healthcare?”
Allen explained, “I feel that there is a huge need for nurses right now because most nurses today are getting ready to retire. I have also had nurses who have inspired me to continue in the nursing field and to further my education in the field so that I can make an impact on someone else’s life too.”
Marshman answered, “My grandma is a home health nurse, and the way she talks about her patients and takes care of them inspires me.”
I chose to join the nursing field because over the course of my life, I have encountered many challenging health obstacles. Each obstacle has had a significant impact on my life and I believe that each unique experience has ignited a passion, motivation, and devotion to serving others as a nurse.
WHAT ARE YOU LOOKING FORWARD TO?
Dunbar is “looking forward to putting smiles on patient’s faces and changing one life at a time.”
Allen explained, “I look forward to meeting new people having different experiences and working towards my future.”
Marshman answered that she is looking forward to “helping people with medical issues, making new friends, and learning so much about the human body and the way it functions.”
I personally am looking forward to serving others, being a light in their life, and being there to make their darkest times brighter.
DO YOU HAVE ANY FEARS ABOUT THE FUTURE?
Dunbar explained that it does scare her a little bit knowing that she is going into the field with all the craziness that is happening right now. She is optimistic that everyone will get through the pandemic eventually. Dunbar also has hope that it will pass so she can physically attend nursing school and her clinical when it comes time.
Allen explained to me that she fears to go into a situation similar to this and it will spread to her family while she is performing her job. She also fears for others she might be helping not being able to see their families while they are struggling.
Marshman stated that is she is not scared because she will be doing her job. She explained that sick people need someone to care for them in all aspects and she wants to be one of those people.
I do have fears about coming into the medical field because of all of the unknowns. No one can control what can happen. All you can do is take everything one step at a time and be willing to take whatever the job hands you and proceed in a manner that will safely help others.
DO YOU HAVE ANY ADVICE FOR THOSE ON THE FENCE ABOUT JOINING THE NURSING FIELD?
Dunbar explained that “there is always gonna be high demands in the nursing field. You will always have a job, and there is satisfaction from helping others.”
Allen advised to just do it. She said, “nurses are needed, especially now because of what’s going on. You’re almost guaranteed a job out of college or high school because of the need. Many nurses now are becoming the age of retirement, so they need nurses now more than ever.”
Marshman said, “there are so many things in the medical field so you’re never limited.” She also advised that “if you think it’s interesting, I’d say go for it and make a difference.”
I strongly advise anyone who has the slightest passion of serving others and an interest in the medical field to strive for becoming a nurse, no matter what level of care. It is a profession where you have a precious life in your hands and you have the chance to change it. That isn’t something you get to do every day, but as a nurse the possibilities of that happening are endless. I have to say that that is something worth becoming a nurse for.
As you can see, these seniors are ready to change the lives of those who they will eventually care for. They have a passion to serve others that is deep inside them. They are willing to join the front lines and become the unsung heroes in the world.
2020 is the year that they will graduate high school. 2020 is the year the Coronavirus altered the ending of their senior year. 2020 is the Year of the Nurse. That is what they all aspire to be despite the uncertainty of the world around them. They have already proven their resilience to adapt and overcome challenges. Soon enough they will be doing the same while changing the countless lives of others.