Starting a nursing program us challenging enough, but it becomes even more so when you have to balance it with work and raising a family. Edite Neves holds it all together by setting realistic goals, keeping a schedule, and staying focused and organized. This is also her second academic journey through NCC.
What's unique about Neves' postsecondary education is that, as a native of Brazil, she arrived at NCC in 2002 needing to master the English language before she could even think about choosing a career field. She was in an ESL lab when she came across information about the radiography program, met with an advisor to discuss her options, interviewed and was accepted into the program. Since graduating in 2004, she has been working as an x-ray technician at St. Luke's Hospital.
"We do a lot of technical work with the machines that are involved in radiology, but you have more contact with patients as a nurse," says Neves. "I would say I'm more of a people person, and to be more directly involved with somebody's care is exciting. You have to remember that when you care for a patient, you also care for their families. But both careers are wonderful and I'm excited for my future in nursing."
Neves has found that having a support system in place both in and out of the classroom has helped her to not only focus, but also excel. The students in the nursing program have formed a camaraderie, studying together and quizzing each other to prepare for their exams. At home, Neves can count on her family – including her school-age son and daughter – to help keep her going. The family carves out personal time between chores that keep the household running efficiently.
"I balanced by sacrificing, and with the support of my husband. I could not do this without him," Neves explains. "I do try to have my time with them. At the end of the day we all sit at the table and do homework together. If you make sure you involve your family in your dream, that makes it easier. If you involve them and say 'Can you guys help me out by cleaning the house?' or 'When I come back we can go out for dinner or do something special', it helps to involve each other in our lives."
Because the advancement of technology means frequent changes in treatments and medications, Neves points out that being part of a profession where you know learning will never end is drilled into students from day one.
"It's very interesting when you see that you're able to do certain things," Neves says. "You think to yourself that you're never going to be able to do that. Then you're priming lines and giving medications, and you just feel so fulfilled. I'm getting there. I don't think it's impossible anymore."
Name: Edite Neves
Projected Graduation Date: 2013