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The role of a nurse. This is truly a
great responsibility and privilege. Author Thom Dick once said: “You’re going
to be there when a lot of people are born, and when a lot of people die. In
most every culture, such moments are regarded as sacred and private, made
special by a divine presence. No one on Earth would be welcomed, but you’re
personally invited. What an honor that is.”. As a nurse, I am filled with
gratitude for the many years I have been able to stand, sit, and kneel at the
beside of the patients I have cared for. Whether witnessing lives come into the
world, holding the hands of patients and family members as others have left, or
witnessing joy as family members return from the brink, it truly has been an
honor. However, in this season of my career and in my life, I find myself with
the desire to do more. To be more. To serve those around me and further change
healthcare as we know it.  There are many
differences between a Registered Nurse (RN) and a Family Nurse Practitioner
(FNP), and I feel the strengths I bring to the FNP program at Westminster
College, will help prepare me to make such changes.

                As
a FNP, my goal is to help further transform healthcare by using the science and
theories of nursing to improve the health of those from all backgrounds,
cultures, ages, and diversities. This includes urban and rural settings.  I hope the be able engage more with the
communities around me, and to do so with cultural inclusiveness and integrity.
I feel that by doing this, I can apply the leadership, steadfastness, and
compassion of a FNP to truly and wholly help the patients I will care for.

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                I
perceive that the differences between the RN and the FNP are based on the idea
that the foundation for a role as advanced caregiver is built and expanded upon
the foundations learned as a RN.  Both
RN’s and FNP’s provide care to their patients. However, aside from the
additional education and extensive clinical training required for a FNP, the
advanced practitioner also functions in a significantly greater autonomous
role. This allows them to diagnose and develop treatment plans for their
patients, including prescribing medications. They can see patients on their own
as a primary provider, or work alongside or refer to a physician or specialist
if need or required. Because of the increased level of autonomy, a FNP has
greater responsibility to their patient. It is that responsibility that sets
the bar higher and sets the FNP apart from the RN.

                The
strengths that I bring to the FNP role are numerous. I am very much a self-starter
that pays attention to detail and to the organization of my responsibilities. I
pride myself in being able to easily communicate complex and challenging topics
to various audiences, including patients and colleagues. I excel in my complex
decision making skills and my ability to adapt to various and often rapidly changing
patient care situations. I delight in working with and caring for people of all
cultural backgrounds and diversities. In my 13 years as a labor and delivery
nurse at the two largest hospitals in the Salt Lake valley, I have cared for
and connected with people from all walks of life. The very young and the very
old, the very rich and the very poor, the refugee, the prisoner, the famous and
everything in between. I have seen the joy of life and the shattering
heartbreak of maternal and fetal loss. In my years as a flight nurse for AirMed
and Life Flight, I have had a chance to be with patients from all circumstances
outside of my community as well. My time with these patients is usually some
the most stressful and terrifying moments of their lives. Through all these
experiences, I have always strived to show empathy and compassion, while also
doing the necessary work in the face of often difficult obstacles to provide the
best outcomes. I feel that because of these experiences, and the qualities
listed above, I will can truly make a positive impact as a FNP. 

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