Where do you hope your Cabarrus College education takes you in the future?

GREEN: My goal is to be a fabulous nurse. I want to be that person who’s going to make a difference. I have so much to give as a nurse; the branches on my tree have just expanded and I still want to grow and learn. I’m hoping to go on and get my bachelor’s degree because I feel like I can be in management. That is my ultimate goal, and I know I have that drive to get there.

WAN: I see myself starting off as a surg tech and then working my way up, maybe becoming a manager and possibly eventually coming back to Cabarrus College and continuing my education. Honestly, it could lead to being an instructor. I think Cabarrus College has the most amazing instructors. They’re all so down to earth and they really know what they’re teaching. That’s kind of what inspired me. I feel like Cabarrus could really take us anywhere in the health field.

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What are the most valuable aspects of your education at Cabarrus College that are preparing you for the future you envision?

GREEN: One of the most valuable aspects for me is believing in myself. Because when you’re at this age, going back to school with so many young people, I wasn’t in the era of all this computer stuff. I just had to believe in myself and reach out for help instead of being fearful people were going to think I’m not smart enough, because I am. The faculty was really (and they still are) my biggest supporters. They have just embraced me so much.

WAN: I think the most valuable part is the program and the way it’s structured. In programs at other colleges, they do a year and a half of learning before they go into clinicals, whereas at Cabarrus College, you learn everything the first semester, and then the second semester, you go straight into clinicals. Putting us in real life situations, using case studies with real patient scenarios promotes critical thinking and really prepares us for the OR. I’ve talked to people in other programs, and they say, “You are so fortunate that your instructors put you in clinicals from the beginning.” Also, the instructors create very close relationships. They make sure we are heard. They go above and beyond.

LOGAN: It’s made me more confident. At first, I was terrified to talk in front of others, but about six weeks into the program, I got the groove of things and realized I really like this. I had a lot of support and that was key. Dr. Sophia (Miranda) and Rhonda (Weaver) are wonderful professors and have shown me that I want to teach others just like me. I’ve also met some students along the way that have been such a great support system. The program has also given me more confidence in the experience I already have. For instance, I had to do a project on patient falls in facilities and how to prevent them, which involved collecting data and doing qualitative and quantitative analysis. It kind of put together the clinical and the educational aspects, like the pieces of a puzzle. And I realized, I’ve been doing this the whole time.