Please describe how COVID-19 has impacted your pathway to nursing school. I am attempting to enter nursing school and need to strengthen my personal statement for a competitive program.
Please describe how COVID-19 has impacted your pathway to nursing school.
Some points to include for personalization:
During my high school years (10th-12th grade), I worked after school at the Continental Boys and Girls Club in Vallejo, CA working with disadvantaged youth providing homework assistance, after school activities, and mentoring. From 2017-2019, I had the opportunity to provide community outreach in a women’s shelter assisting with children, working with the women in the communal kitchen, and helping around the facility. I was also involved in volunteering with collection and distribution of clothing and home goods for the shelter as well. Additionally, pre-COVID, I was involved with Kaiser Cares (volunteer opportunities within the community) including working at health fairs, dental fairs, and community clean-up projects. And lastly, I have had the opportunity to work with Kaiser Vallejo’s No One Dies Along (NODA) project with my mother. This consists of being present with individuals who are dying and do not have family or friends available to be with them as they pass. After sitting in one of these vigils, I decided that I wanted to be a nurse.
Obstacles are a part of life but how to react to them determines whether you rise above it or allow it to prevent personal growth. I come from a family of overachievers, and being the youngest child, I have felt the need to live up to what I believed were my family’s expectations. I always tried to do my best in school, worked hard to succeed in my educational path and my places of employment. From these experiences and challenges, I have discovered more about myself and the goals I want to achieve.
The COVID pandemic upended the lives of everyone. Although I do well in school, it does not always come easy. After completing my schooling in person throughout high school, I was suddenly forced to completely change my educational environment, learning style, and interaction with my professors and other students. My participation in schooling is strengthened by in-person study, engaging with others, and having an environment conducive to learning. I needed to modify all aspects of my life while trying to adapt to this new form of college.
In adjusting to my “new normal,” I found hidden strengths and unacknowledged challenges that help define exactly who I am. Forced to see my worldview in a different light with new perspectives caused some anxiety and fear and encouraged me to adapt and cope with obstacles in my path. Through this process, I could have decided to put my education and work on hold but decided my life does not stop because of perceived or actual obstacles. I made the conscious choice to continue going to college, taking general education and science courses while still working at Starbucks. I taught myself new ways of learning (along with my instructors learning how to teach) as we navigated the coursework over Zoom meetings and pre-recorded lectures and emailed questions instead of asking in real-time. And in the end, I reached my educational goals and discovered more about myself. COVID may have changed the world, but I can happily say I rose to the challenge.