Making a Difference: A Nursing Journey

By Joanne Senn

Nursing student does work on laptop at desk

When I was a girl, my father was a hospital administrator who started off as a medic in the army. When he retired, he ran a nursing home and would often take me, giving me a feel for hospitals and healthcare at a young age. It was these experiences early on, as well as the fact that my two older sisters were nurses, that shaped my decision to go into nursing.

My Nursing Journey

My healthcare journey has taken me many places and given me many opportunities. I am a certified emergency nurse with over 30 years of ER nursing experience. I have worked on levels 1, 2 and 3 and on trauma. I have also spent 25 years working in inner city Baltimore, but I currently work in an ER in South Carolina. Presently, I hold a master’s degree in clinical nurse leadership and am board certified with AANC, but getting to this point was not always an easy road.

When I was 18, my father died. At this point, I was not financially able to continue my bachelor’s program so I switched to an associate program while working part-time. I worked for five years before I could go back to school. I also had to go to hospitals and do clinical experiences, but this allowed me to get my BSN paid for overall.

Teaching Classes

As a professor, I have taught many classes including Pathophysiology and Nursing Management of Clients’ Health, Trends and Issues in Today’s Health Care and the Professional Capstone and Practicum at GCU. I have also had the privilege of teaching Professional Dynamics and Introduction to Nursing Research.

Advice for Nurses

I advise nurses who are considering going back to advance their education to go for it! I always tell nurses to go back to school because it makes them better rounded nurses who are able to advance more easily and be in a position to accept more opportunities.

Advice for Nursing Students

I hope that current nursing students can take some of the information they learned throughout their courses and let it empower them to be better nurses and create a positive change thorough promoting better care of patients. Students can really make a difference in the world.

GCU has many nursing degree programs designed to allow students the opportunity for success. To learn more about our nursing programs, visit our website or click the Request More Information button on this page.

The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author’s and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of Grand Canyon University. Any sources cited were accurate as of the publish date.