Tell us abour STEM background?
Registered Nurse in a Level 1 Trauma Center Emergency Department- 7 years.
Cross trained into the Intensive Care Unit and Pediatric Emergency Room.
PRN pre/intra/post-operative Registered Nurse for an oral maxillofacial surgeon- 3.5 years.
Arizona State University critical care professor for post baccalaureate master’s degree students- 1 year.
Currently a Master’s student obtaining my Family Nurse Practitioner degree where I implement the use of evidence based practice and research for best patient care and interventions.
When did you realized that you loved science?
I had a sixth grade teacher, Mrs. Larsen, who inspired me to love science. She was so passionate about teaching us about the world around us that from that point forward I was hooked!
Why did you choose healthcare?
Initially the interest that got me into nursing was my desire to be at the bedside with the patient. I knew I wanted to work in healthcare as I have many family members in health care who always inspired me. I wanted to be someone that people could trust and someone who made everyone feel heard. I wanted to have career that I thought I was truly making an impact on people’s lives. I have always enjoyed science, anatomy, and physiology. These are areas that I have thrived at and I believe that I have the heart to take care of other people well. My family has a saying that is BVKTE meaning be very kind to everyone. I wanted to take this saying into my job setting. I feel that is so important in health care that people feel like someone truly cares about them and that is a large reason why I became a nurse.
Favorite thing about working in healthcare?
I love providing patients with great care. I know when they are seeing me that it is often at their worst and I enjoy making patients feel more comfortable and often times providing life changing interventions. Specifically this year with COVID-19, I feel very lucky to be a nurse and am thankful that I can actively contribute in a positive way. I am thankful that I have the education to be able to provide care to people impacted with COVID-19.
How does cheer and STEM fit together for you?
STEM and cheer fit together for me in that cheer/dance has always been an outlet for me. I work a stressful job and being able to have an outlet has always been incredible. Dance has been a way of expression for me my entire life. Dance has provided me with many friendships that have helped me build confidence and that has also made me confident in the workplace. I also feel that through community events and growing up public speaking, it has allowed me to communicate well with the healthcare team as well as patients and their families.
Can you tell us about a time you faced adversity in your career and how you overcame it?
Every day in my career I am faced with life changing decisions and tough questions that need to be acted upon quickly through critical thinking. I always remind myself “you have to do the best you can do with the information that you have.” I believe that quote applies to most everything in life. When I started out as a nurse, I was 21 years old and working in a critical care setting. Patients often though that I looked “too young” to work there and I frequently felt like I needed to prove myself to them. I think this only pushed me to be better and has made me the nurse I am today.
Why is science cheerleaders important to you?
I want to remind children and adults that YOU CAN DO BOTH. You can thrive in your career while also having another interest to you that is equally important. It is important to enjoy your life and not feel that you have to fit into one certain category. Science Cheerleaders helps break the stereotype that you have to be one or the other. It is also inspiring to read about all of the other cheerleaders and their STEM career paths. It shows how individually unique we all are but at the same time have so much in common.
What is one thing that you would like others to learn?
I hope that everyone learns that you can be WHOEVER you want to be! There is no one that is holding you back from your dreams! Push forward, be your most authentic self, be kind, and GO FOR IT!