Growing up I’ve always had a passion for science and a love of people so the nursing profession fit right into what I wanted to do in my professional life. I knew that I wanted to make a difference in the lives of the people I worked with while also having meaningful patient interactions.
During my first job as a nurse at Vidant Health Center, I had the opportunity to work with a nursing student from ECU on her Capstone project and educate her on the role of nursing. During my time with this student, I realized that I loved the aspect of nursing education. After my time as an RN floor nurse, I decided to pursue an advanced degree in nursing education. During my master’s program, I was accepted into the second cohort of the WSSU-Duke Nursing Bridge to the Doctorate program where I was exposed to research. Through this program I became very interested in research and then decided to pursue my PhD, being particularly interested in exploring the avenue or what would a nursing career even look like, coupled with also being a nurse educator?
Being a part of the WSSU-Duke Nursing Bridge to the Doctorate program allowed me to get a feel for what being a student at DUSON would be like. During the program, I was able to spend eight weeks at DUSON with my mentor while working on my master’s thesis and during my time here I was able to be immersed in the DUSON community. While here, I was amazed by the support, rich resources and diverse faculty expertise afforded to me. I chose DUSON to pursue my PhD degree because of the diverse faculty expertise, support and the ability to collaborate with other health science researchers across Duke.
My PhD research is focused on the HPV vaccine. During my undergraduate studies, I noticed many of my friends either lacked the knowledge regarding HPV and its vaccine. Doing my research at DUSON affords me the opportunity to work with an interdisciplinary team that includes a pediatrician from the School of Medicine and a faculty member at the Florida International University to help further my research.
The mentoring I’ve received at DUSON is not only preparing me to be an excellent nurse researcher that can advance science in the future of nursing, but it’s also prepared me to be a leader in advancing the future of nursing. I feel the Center of Nursing Discovery Simulation Lab affords me excellent innovative and up-to-date nursing knowledge that I’ll be able to pass on to future nursing students.