Your stories: “Why I became a nurse educator”

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Image: Peter Dazeley | Photographer's Choice RF | Getty Images

I have wanted to teach ever since I was a little girl. Playing classroom with my neighborhood friends was a daily occurrence during long summer breaks. I graduated from a diploma nursing program in 1985. At that time I never dreamed that I would someday become a nurse educator.

In 1987, I was recognized in the Atlanta Constitution’s Nurses “Make a Difference” Program. A family whose child had been treated for meningitis had nominated me. The nomination letter described the story of how I had explained the disease to the family in terms they could understand and how helpful that had been in a time of great stress. The family even mentioned that they kept the diagram I had drawn, illustrating the spinal cord. At that moment, I knew that I had a great love for teaching and dreamed that someday I would return to school and further my education.

In 2005, I made the decision to go back to school to obtain my BSN and eventually my MSNE. Many times I had contemplated this return, but my perceived poor math skills always held me back. After attending a workshop on positive self-talk, I decided to do whatever it took to succeed. Two semesters of remedial math later, I was on my way.

Going back to school has not been easy with a family and a job. I’ve had tremendous support from family and friends, which has enabled me to fulfill my dream. Since that day when I read the nomination letter, I’ve been empowered to become a lifelong learner and teacher. I wish I could thank that family for taking the time to write that nomination letter and giving me the inspiration to become the teacher I am today.

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