Lake Villa, Illinois
After transferring from psychology to nursing at Carthage, senior Andrea Kline couldn’t be happier. The Nursing Program and its professors have boosted Andrea’s confidence and pushed her to reach her highest potential. After graduation, Andrea hopes to work in a children’s emergency room, using her knowledge learned at Carthage to save lives.
“For the first time in my life, I know what I want to do with my future.”
“When I graduate from Carthage, I hope to get a job as a Registered Nurse for a few years wherever I can, but eventually, I hope to work in a children’s hospital in an emergency room setting. I love the fast paced nature of this type of work and working with children.”
How have Carthage faculty had an impact on your life or Carthage career?
“One professor who made a difference to me is Dr. Cheryl Petersen. From the very beginning, she has shown a confidence in me that no one else ever has before. Her believing in me helped me to learn to believe in myself, and really changed my life in general for the better. I have never had great self confidence, but in a few short weeks, she helped me to build an entirely new outlook on my abilities, and I could never thank her enough.”
“My favorite class so far has been my first clinical. Working with Dr. Petersen was phenomenal and I could not have asked for a better instructor in the clinical setting. In the classroom, Dr. Frank Hicks presents his information in a way that is understandable, and never turns down a question. He is so intelligent and it is obvious with every conversation that he cares deeply about each and every student and wants us all to succeed, even if it means putting in extra work on his end to help us.”
“My toughest class at Carthage so far has been pathophysiology. It has been difficult for me to remember all the different diseases and not to mix up parts of one with another. This is a class that requires you to really study and know your stuff, from anatomy too, or it will come back to bite you later on.”
Internships or on-campus employment
“I have not had an internship yet, but I am actually waiting for a call back about one that I will hopefully be starting shortly. I went in for an interview the other day and now I’m just waiting for a call back. I applied to work in the ICU as a Student Nurse Intern at St. Catherine’s.”
Opportunities at Carthage
Favorite moments and memories at Carthage
“Something that stands out to me, especially with my nursing class being as small as it is, is how close we are. You still can’t walk across campus without seeing someone else in the major, if you aren’t already walking with a group of them, and you know they will at least smile and say hi. We are all friends and it’s nice to know you can always find someone to study with or to go to lunch with. It is like our own little nursing family.”
Favorite spot on campus
“My favorite spot on campus is the lake. It is so relaxing and can turn any bad day into a better one. I have a hammock and when it’s nice out, I’ll go sit outside in it and study. There is nothing that beats the sound of the waves on a nice day.”
Biggest surprise so far
“My biggest surprise would probably be my change in majors. I have grown up for my entire life wanting to be a psychology major. I wanted to do horse therapy. I love horses and I love kids, and I just kind of got that idea in my head and went with it. But when I finally started all of the psychology classes, I decided that it was not what I wanted. Then I found nursing and made the transition over, which was far easier than expected. I am so grateful I made the decision to switch.”
What would your 8-year-old self think of you now?
“I was about 7 or 8 when I decided I wanted to do horse therapy. However, I think if 8 year old me saw how happy I was with what I am doing now, she would be pretty excited about it.”
Why should other students consider your major? What advice do you have for them?
“Nursing is not just about learning skills and doing them. It is about forming connections and relationships with your patients to help them to feel comfortable and safe in your care. Nursing has helped me to find myself. Over the past few months of beginning my nursing clinicals, I have gained so much confidence in myself which is something I have always been lacking in. Nursing has helped to bring out the best in me, and I can say without a doubt, it is the best decision I have ever made for myself.”
“However, when people say nursing is a lot of work, they aren’t kidding. Be ready for late night study sessions. You might not be able to go out with your friends every time you want to, but it is worth it. Once you start clinicals, and start working with real people, you learn very quickly that the differences you make in their lives are worth it. You could be working with someone in the hospital who is quite possibly having the absolute worst day of their life. If sacrificing a few trips to the mall or out to lunch helps you to learn something that can save their life, it will all be worth it.”