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Masters, Nursing Anesthesia, CRNA

January 3, 2013

Throughout my adult life, I have known the value of a quality education.  Moreover, I have never lost sight of my dream: to become the finest nurse I possibly can.  In order to bring my plans to fruition, I need to enter into an academic relationship with a School of Nursing whose breadth and autonomy of curriculum coupled with learning atmosphere I can believe in.  Turning to University at XXXX’s School of Nursing was a natural and logical choice.

The graduate nurse anesthetist program holds the greatest appeal for me, and through practical experiences, ever increasing in responsibility and exposure, I have grown that much more convinced that becoming a CRNA is exactly where I can do the greatest good.  Nurse anesthesia is the most challenging and elite branch of nursing, and I am eager to increase the minority representation in this area, becoming a role model for other Women of Color, demonstrating that hard work and perseverance, irrespective of the so-called “odds”, brings great rewards.

 More specifically, the field of nurse anesthesiology holds a great deal of appeal for me.  Through my experiences, observing and being involved with general and regional anesthesia in the settings of pain management, and critical care - many aspects of peri-operative anesthesia consultation work - I have found that my passion is with clinical pharmacology and challenges in which a life hangs in the balance.  I feel I would get tremendous personal and professional satisfaction from tipping the scales in the favor of the patient in these delicate situations, using my skills, education and passion for teamwork to save a life.  Coupled with this is my desire to make my patients as comfortable as possible, if not completely bring about the cessation of pain.  I love the intensity of the ICU working environment.  What many call the pressures of the job, I find truly invigorating, the need for accuracy, speed and well-developed observational skills, all of which I have solidified.

 Having worked as an integral part of a multidisciplinary medical team, I bring with me to the student body a passion for teamwork, combined with an ability to think on my feet, a skill I developed working as a traveling nurse, adapting quickly to set-ups that were not as well equipped as others, being creative and flexible.  Furthermore, I bring with me a unique worldview, one that I developed as I deliberately sought out and procured nursing experiences outside the US.  Working in New Zealand as a nurse and as a nurse for Carnival Cruise Line, I am able to interact effectively with people of many backgrounds, creeds, and cultures.  There is a need to reach out to our diverse patients, to understand and appreciate our differences, be it cultural or socioeconomic, an appreciation of the rich tapestry of life that we are all a part of on earth.  This is what I bring to the student body, as well, one in which I anticipate many opportunities for group assignments, teamwork, research and projects.

In terms of my career goals post-graduation, I anticipate becoming a CRNA, and building my exposure in peri-operative anesthesia consultation work in general and regional anesthesia as a CRNA, focusing on general and regional anesthesia in the settings of pain management and critical care.  Combined with this, I have a very personal goal: to become a foster mother.  Nothing would bring me greater spiritual satisfaction than to give a child in need a chance at life, a chance that I had to fight for.

 Earning my BSN was one of the proudest moments of my life, and was one of the hardest won, illustrating my sheer will and resolve.  Working two jobs to support myself throughout school, recovering from the setback of suffering a car accident, repeating my first and third semesters and being denied student loans did nothing to dissolve my hopes.  JolietJunior College was an excellent proving and training ground for me as a future nurse and graduate student.  Indeed, repeating my third semester was a need born of missing a requirement by a mere 0.2%.  Unperturbed by this setback, I completed my work, earning a better score than before.  Now, as things have stabilized at home since these trying times, I anticipate a solid foundation from which to develop myself further, with little or no impediments.

 My humble beginnings as a patient care/monitor technician convinced me that nursing was the ideal environment for my career, and my confidence increased with every patient I encountered and nurse I observed or assisted.  As a nurse in New Zealand and on Carnival Cruise Line, I developed my interpersonal and observational skills, and clinical acumen.  Now in Seattle, I have been increasing my exposure to more advanced cases and situations by working with an Advanced Practice Nurse in the ER, paving my way to the ICU.  Moreover, I have been left wanting to give more of myself as I have shadowed and quizzed nurse anesthesiologists mercilessly.

 Overcoming time management and, quite literally sleep-related issues was an obstacle I overcame through necessity.  While many students learn time management skills in the lecture hall, I learned them through going to school full-time and working full-time.  Balancing my time by working at my paying job three “long days” a week, I was able to free up critical study time, thereby optimizing my academic performance and understanding, while simultaneously still immersing myself in practical clinical situations.

 I left home when I was 18 years old, leaving behind a fatherless home and a mother that was incapable of reaching out to anyone.  Working full-time and going to school left me little time for extracurricular activities or volunteerism.  As I have alluded to earlier, I never gave up on my dream of becoming a nurse, overcoming countless obstacles, including balancing my time between full-time work and full-time school, earning enough money to pay for school, keep food on the table and a roof over my head, a car accident that set me back an entire semester, and a childhood that I had to come to terms with, one that I had to rise above.  Whether or not I must forget my childhood is irrelevant; I know that I never will.  And so, I aim to become an exceptional nurse and foster mother, bringing my compassion, love, and example to a child that may be on the edge of losing all hope.  I will be able to reach out to them, tell them not to worry, I have been there before, and I know the way out.

 I look forward to my time with University of XXXX’s School of Nursing.  No other school has impressed me more, not just with its amazing faculty, diverse student body and challenging curriculum, but the culture I will be serving.  I know that I would feel very comfortable living and studying in XXXX, and would be honored to count myself among XXXX’s alumni.

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