Celebrating Women’s History Month, the College of Nursing spotlights a new generation of nursing students who inspire to become future nursing leaders.
Natalie Trimble, Student Government Association Speaker of the Senate
How do you stay motivated in nursing school while participating in extracurricular activities?
Staying motivated as a full-time nursing student and leader in student government isn’t always easy, but it is always worth it. Whether it be for a patient in the hospital or a senator in student government, I am constantly striving to be the best version of myself. At first, I thought I could do it all. I quickly realized that doing it all is not possible without prioritizing my mental health. It is so important to prioritize mental health because if I don’t, I am not able to be an effective student nurse or leader.
Through the Magellan fund, I am researching the experiences of TRICARE beneficiaries and the pediatric specialty referral process. As a military kid, I have firsthand experience of how moving every one to two years impacts the health of military children. I attended the National Collegiate Research Conference at Harvard University to share the results of my research. I realized that there are very few student nurse researchers despite the fact that the nursing profession is shaped by evidence-based practice. It is crucial for positive patient care outcomes that nurses are continually involved in research.
I am extremely fortunate to have the best support system anyone could ask for. I am in challenging nursing courses with professors who genuinely care for the success of their students. I also have a staff of five people in Student Government who would do anything I ask of them if it meant they could help make my job easier. I couldn’t be successful as Speaker of the Student Senate without them. I am also lucky to have a strong clinical group that helps me maximize my study time so that I can succeed in my classes. Ans of course, I have two loving parents who support me through all the decisions I make.
Caroline Waxman, Student Nurses Association President
What has helped you overcome challenges throughout college?
Having a close support group of friends and professors is the key to being successful inside and outside the classroom. I don’t think I would have been a successful SNA President without my faculty advisors. SNA advisors, Dr. Eboni Harris and Dr. Teresa Bowers were previous professors of mine, so they knew my strengths and my abilities. They helped me learn and grow as an individual and leader, and I will be forever thankful to them for supporting me along my leadership journey. With my position on the 2022-23 SNA-SC Board, I joined the board not knowing anyone and left the board with people of all different backgrounds and experiences in my corner.
Mental health has played a large role in balancing being a leader and being in school. As a nurse, you can’t take care of others if you can’t take care of yourself! Something we learned about in class is how to delegate tasks as a nurse. A strong leader is someone who can delegate tasks to other leaders. Delegating tasks to the other members of my executive board as president of SNA-USC helped me stay organized and not get overwhelmed.
Ever since high school, I had the goal of graduating nursing school and working at Georgetown University Hospital in Washington DC. During the summer of 2022, I had the opportunity to have an externship at Georgetown in the Medical-Surgical Intensive Care Unit (MSICU). Having this experience opened so many doors for me. I found that my passion lies in helping and caring for patients in the ICU. At the end of the summer, I was offered a full-time job post-graduation. Keeping my sights set on my future goals helps me remain motivated to work hard, even during times when nursing school is hard.