For Susie Morrison, of Sydney, NS, a career in nursing was a goal that she was always working toward. The community-minded and compassionate 32 year-old took her time in attending university, but when she was ready she knew that CBU’s Nursing program was the best fit for her. “I feel a strong connection to the University,” says Susie, who really wanted to stay, live, and work in Cape Breton. “I had been out of school for 12 years before applying to university and the nursing program is very competitive. I went to night school to upgrade all of my Sciences so I’d be better prepared. I’ll never forget the day I got my acceptance letter in the mail. It was a great day!”
Having been a volunteer fitness instructor in Sydney and surrounding areas for more than 15 years, Susie is a passionate advocate for healthy living and encourages all those around her to pursue their best life possible.
Noticing this, a regular in one of Susie’s infamous fitness classes took the time to pen a letter to the Cape Breton District Health Authority’s* Nursing Director posing the question, “How do we get young, health conscious people like Susie interested in perusing nursing as a career?”
Weeks later when the author of that letter, a CBDHA nurse by the name of Valerie Nugent, showed Susie her letter she set into motion a journey that would change Susie’s life and lead her down a path to what will be a rewarding career choice as a nurse.
“I printed a copy of that letter and carried it around with me for a long time. It really had a huge impact on my life,” says Susie. “It gave me confidence and motivated me to start taking the steps needed to go back to school. As a future Registered Nurse in our community, I hope that I get an opportunity to empower other young people to succeed in Nursing, the way that Valerie empowered and inspired me.”
As Susie counts down the days until graduation (literally, she’s had a countdown on her phone for the last two years), her confidence continues to grow and she’ll soon begin the transition from student to nurse.
“I have learned more in the last four years than I ever knew I was capable of,” says Susie. “At CBU we are taught all of the skills we need to know and how to execute them efficiently. We are given the theory behind the skills and are taught how to bridge our theory into nursing practice. Most importantly, we are taught about caring, and that the strength of our character is just as important as the knowledge we possess.”
*The Cape Breton District Health Authority is now known as the Nova Scotia Health Authority.