Hello everyone, my name is Shana, and I am currently an ICU nurse in Michigan. Being a full-time mom and a full-time nurse, accessibility and independence in school is a must. I knew it was time for me to continue my education but needed a place that allowed me to complete tasks based on my own schedule. After doing my research and following a few leads from coworkers, I ended up here at Walden!
In Walden’s mission statement, the words “transform diverse nursing professionals into champions of change” stuck out the most to me. Being a bedside nurse has made it evident that healthcare is a constant work in progress. Change requires prepared and responsible professionals, which I aspire to be. Walden’s goals tell me that they want to support their student’s success in these areas. One of these goals is to “Empower diverse nursing professionals through academic advancement that enhances personal growth, professional development, clinical reasoning, and the desire for lifelong learning” (Walden University, 2022). This goal means that Walden will strive to prepare me with the skills necessary to advance my clinical practice and develop strategies to continue to improve myself.
I appreciate Walden providing tools that allow work/school balance. I can continue working and being present for my daughter while I also have the opportunity to network with professionals who are on the same mission. Networking is vital in progressing as a professional. In an article titled Professional Networking in Nursing, author Kristen explores the importance of networking in uncovering job opportunities. She says that according to a LinkedIn survey, 85% of all jobs are secured through networking. Many of these with robust referral programs and incentives (Hamlin, 2022). I got my current job because of a referral from one of my nursing instructors. Living in a small rural area makes networking challenging for me, but Angelina Walker highlights ways of networking remotely. Walker speaks specifically on social media, stating, “With access to resources and tools, at the click of a tab, social media is quickly becoming the number one resource for professional networking. It is one of the most effective ways to build alliances” (2022, Walker). Social media sites like LinkedIn and Facebook host millions of people and have proven helpful in my personal life early in my career. Walden already incorporates some remote strategies with the class café and Facebook page!