Like most people, I thought a great deal about what career I want to follow, and I’ll admit I’ve changed my mind a few times. However, after spending more than a year caring for a wonderful 84-year-old woman with Parkinson’s disease, I knew I wanted to pursue a career in the health care field; after watching the dedicated, skilled, and caring nurses who worked with my patient during her final days, I realized that I too wish to become a nurse.

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I consider nursing to be the perfect application of both medical science and technology and personal care. There is no question that doctors, surgeons, anaesthesiologists, and lab techs are all vital to the public health. However, a nurse is privileged to interact with a patient on a daily basis. Nurses are often the first to see signs of improvement in a patient‘s condition—or they can be the first to spot a worrying symptom that needs an immediate response. Nurses can help make patients comfortable and answer questions about their treatment. They can ensure that even if a patient has no family nearby, there’s still someone who cares. Nurses can offer encouragement and a listening ear. They work closely with the medical staff to make sure each patient is getting the best care possible. Nurses are there to cheer on a young mother in labour, and they are there to hold the hand of a dying elderly man. More than any other member of the medical staff, the nurse is the “public” face of healthcare for so many patients.

Having seen what a difference skilled nursing can makes in both the physical and mental health of the patient, I wish to pursue my education so that I can become a fully qualified nurse and work in a hospital or clinic setting. I would like to specialize in geriatric care, and with the growing elder population, I am confident that my nursing education will let me make a difference in many people’s lives, especially when the inevitable end of life must be faced. I look forward to developing the skills and knowledge I need to put my love for helping others to use in the healthcare field. I am pleased and excited to be starting on the path to my nursing career.