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Meet ScrubsMag’s new Nurseonality, nurse Mendoza!

Edgar Mendoza

It’s no secret that we here at ScrubsMag love our Nurseonalities. Brimming with stories, positivity, advice and, of course, sheer personality, our Nurseonalities help keep ScrubsMag original, authentic and very much in tune with all things nursey.

Today, we are more than pleased to announce that another Nurseonality is stepping out onto the ScrubsMag scene. Meet Edgar Mendoza!

Tell us a little bit about yourself.

First and foremost, I try to be a gentleman by day, a nurse by night and tatted by choice. My name is Nurse Mendoza, but my legal government name is Edgar Mendoza. I was born and raised in Northern California in a small town near Sacramento, and I’ve lived here my whole life. A huge, stereotypical Hispanic family and close childhood friends are the reasons I’ve stayed in this location.

 

How long have you been a nurse?

I’ve been a registered nurse since 2011. Then in 2013, I transitioned into critical care on the cardiac unit and ICU where I found my niche and love for what I do. I couldn’t have done this without my awesome preceptors

 

 

Who or what inspired you to go into nursing? Did you always know that this was the path for you?

The reason I became a nurse is because of my family. I always knew I had a passion to help others. That was just always in my heart. My mother has a heart of gold and my father has huge discipline. My grandpa has a great sense of humor and my grandma is so giving and cares for others. Just a combination of all that in my family made me become somebody who has wanted to help others since I was a kid. I’ve always wanted to help, teach and educate, but being a doctor just wasn’t my calling.  

 

Tell us about your most memorable patient, moment or experience.

I had a patient with lung disease and pulmonary issues; he ended up going into ARDS and the outcome didn’t look very good. He was in critical care for over a month and I took care of him for about two weeks of that month. We got him extubated, got him off the sedation. He started working on physical therapy, and when he was ready to speak, he thanked me personally for my care; he wanted me to come back as his nurse. He complimented me on my tattoos and he said we needed more male nurses in this field. It’s not just taking care of your patients—it’s also considering their background and who these people are, what their diagnosis is, and that made a huge difference just hearing that from him. He just told me thanks for the care, and that changed my perspective on everything. That was a pretty memorable day. This is one of the best reasons why I go to work.  

 

What is it you love most about nursing?

Educating patients. What’s important for us nurses is we have to educate, educate, educate and teach, teach, teach. And I feel sometimes that’s missed because we get so caught up in the care that we’re doing at the bedside that we forget to even educate the family members and the patients. It just goes by so fast. And that’s one of the reasons why I love to do this, because we’re continuously educating these families and they’re all nervous and scared. So just doing that on a day-to-day basis, I love that—to explain the care and what we’re doing. I feel like we need more of that.

 

If you could change one thing about nursing, what would it be?

One thing I would definitely change is the stereotypical “murse.” We don’t call guys “murses” anymore. We don’t call girls “gurses”! So every time someone asks, “So you’re a male nurse?” I look at them and I’m like, “Yes, I’ve been a male for 32 years and a nurse for the last five years.”

I’m trying to make a huge difference to at least get more minorities, more Hispanics, whatever culture, whatever nationality, whatever race you are, to get more male nurses [into the field]. Statistics right now are pretty low; the statistics for guys are between 10 and 13 percent. That’s one thing I would definitely change about nursing: break the boundaries for male nurses and just increase that number and show that it’s not just a female-dominated place to work. We can definitely get more males in here and change that number.

 

 

What’s your number one piece of advice for fellow nurses?

Don’t change who you are. Be who you are, and be proactive for your patients. As much as you can, be an advocate for your patient and be that voice. I would say don’t ever be quiet. If you have something to say about your patient’s condition, be an advocate and be proactive.

 

What’s a goal that you’ve set for yourself—anything from learning a new skill to overcoming a fear?

My main goal is to get my master’s. I want to do administration or teaching. And right now I’m trying to study and get my CCRN. But my main focus—I have a lot of goals—is to be a voice for all the nurses. Change one person, one day at a time, whether it’s patients or the families, and just be one of those individuals who can help out and let people know that you can become a nurse. You can do this. This is not something that you can’t do.

I get a lot of messages from people through YouTube, Instagram, Twitter and email, and they always let me know, “Hey, you inspired me to become a nurse, I want to go back to school, can I do this?” And they have questions about prereqs, school, recommendations. I try to answer and I tell them, “Yeah, this is possible, do what your heart tells you to do. And don’t do it for the money because you will get burned out. You’ve gotta do this because you have passion and because this is your calling.”

 

What’s in your work bag? Or what are your top three nurse essentials and why?

Stethoscope, number one. I clean that baby before and after I go to work. I actually did a video on YouTube about what’s in my nursing bag. The second thing I carry is—I’m a nurse, I gotta carry my pens, pencils and all that with me. You know the little flip color pen? I carry a bunch of those. Love that pen. Then the third most important thing I carry with me at work—I’m a garbage disposal, I eat every two minutes—I have granola bars, because you don’t really have time to sit back and enjoy your food. I keep granola bars in that bag and I eat whenever I can.

Note: Luckily for us, Nurse Mendoza somehow sensed that we would be asking this question in the future and had already uploaded a video to his YouTube account exploring what he keeps in his bag. Check it out!

 

 

Finally, where do you see yourself in five years?

I’ll be done with my master’s in education or administration. I would be, at that point, still cranking out my YouTube videos helping others—and that’s for free; I do that just because I love helping others, spreading the word. I’m still going to be doing YouTube, still doing Instagram and Twitter. The main important thing is going into administration, helping others in a hospital setting with my master’s and/or educating others at a college. And continuing to push those minority statistics and increasing the number of male nurses in our society and our country.

Share your own questions for nurse Mendoza in the comments section below!

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One Response to Meet ScrubsMag’s new Nurseonality, nurse Mendoza!

  1. selfdevlab

    Hi Edgar,

    Just wanted to give a shout out for your youtube channel. Fab-u-losa!

    I like that you share helpful information and advocate for nurses, but also how you share it – friendly, guy-vibe, urban-style command.

    I’ve noticed that oftentimes when people (including me) record videos, they begin their greeting and end the video in awkward ways. Take forever saying a weak, insecure “hello” or “goodbye.” Not so with you. Your beginnings and endings are really strong, confident. You’re comfortable, happy (not awkward), and in control.

    I’m just starting my website and want to have videos in it. I’d love to get some quick advice from you, since you’ve been at this a long time and have had such great success!

    What advice would you give for beginning and ending my videos in a strong manner? How do you make your salutations not awkward?

    A. Have the same line to begin and end each video so I don’t have to think about what I’m going to say.

    B. Tape a photo of someone I know and like to the camera in an attempt to look genuine when I begin and end.

    C. Something else.

    Thanks for any input you’re able to give; I’d love to hear it!

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