A Passion for Learning and a Yearning to Care
The Jewish Home’s Annenberg School of Nursing (ASN) continues to provide an exceptional learning opportunity for those who are interested in helping others as a nurse assistant, home health aide, or vocational nurse. Since its inaugural Class of 2008, over 100 students have completed the 13-month, full-time Vocational Nurse (VN) program and begun fulfilling careers. As ASN prepares for the graduation of the Class of 2016 in July, and to welcome the Class of 2017 in September, Jewish Home e-Connections will present some of our graduates’ success stories. We hope they will inspire readers who may be considering a career in the field of nursing to take that step to change their lives, and the lives of others.
ASN alumni Susan Genova, Class of 2012, always had a passion for learning and was drawn to science and biology. Her lifelong goal was to study nursing; but her path was sidetracked a bit after she graduated from Emory University with an Associate’s Degree in Applied Science. Susan would go on to work on Wall Street as a Bank Stock Analyst’s Assistant doing research and as a Webmaster. “Most importantly,” she says, “I raised two children and now have two grandchildren. Becoming a nurse was always on my mind, but I couldn’t figure out my way back to school.”
Susan’s mother died unexpectedly in 2009. “For two years after her death, I could hear her voice telling me to go back to school.” The opportunity to attend ASN came along, and Susan took it. “I was nervous about going back to school at 52. My husband was very supportive and encouraged me to take the step forward. Marie Cordeiro, ASN’s Director, helped immensely. “Through her constant confidence in me I was able to draw on strength I did not know I had.” Susan studied diligently and committed to making school her top priority, which resulted in her graduating among the top in her class.
After passing the NCLEX-PN® exam in 2012, Susan worked as a LVN at the Home’s Joyce Eisenberg-Keefer Medical Center. “I was trying to figure out what was next for me. I started teaching Nursing Assistant classes at The Red Cross. Through this I became certified as a DSD – Director of Staff Development – and I knew that was the next right choice for me.” Shortly after completing her certification, Susan applied for the DSD position at the Home’s Eisenberg Village. She has been working in that capacity since August 2015.
“At the Annenberg School of Nursing, Susan took her studies seriously,” says ASN director Marie Cordeiro. “She was considerate of her classmates and truly cared about their success. During clinical rotations, Susan was eager to learn and showed great compassion with patients. Her successful career is a reflection of her commitment to nursing and helping others to thrive.”
Upon reflecting at her time at ASN, Susan shares what made the experience so beneficial in her nursing career. “The small class size encourages team work and camaraderie. ASN offers a variety of clinical sites not available to most VN programs. This exposure teaches you to be quick on your feet and quick in your mind. And when a position at the Jewish Home is available and an ASN graduate has the appropriate skills, you are able to gain experience in your field after graduation, which is critical at the beginning of your nursing career.” Congratulations to Susan Genova on discovering her path to a successful career in nursing. Your dedication to learning, team work, and providing excellence in care is greatly appreciated by the Jewish Home residents and staff, and the Annenberg School of Nursing is proud of you.
For information about the Jewish Home’s Annenberg School of Nursing, please contact Cindy Thomas, admissions coordinator, at Cindy.Thomas@jha.org or (818) 757-4431, or visit ASN’s website at www.asn.edu.