After her father passed away at a young age, Ashley knew she eventually wanted to pursue a career in healthcare. However, after graduating from Rosthern High School in 2009, Ashley started her post-secondary journey in the area of business. While on maternity leave after different office jobs, she finally decided she needed to pursue her dream. In considering her options, Ashley subsequently chose Cumberland College and the Practical Nursing program. She did so because Cumberland College was close to home, she had heard great things about the College, and the small class size was important to her. Ashley has nothing but positive things to say about her time at the College. Every interaction with the staff, regardless of their role, was encouraging and helpful, and in her words, “The instructors were phenomenal.” Due to the strain of the program, both mentally and emotionally, she and her classmates became very close and they always knew there was someone to lean on and to talk to. This strong base gave her confidence and helped her through the program, and will continue to help her as she pursues her career as an LPN in facilities in Tisdale and Melfort.
When asked about her favorite memory from her time at the College, Ashley identified both a personal memory and a professional one. Professionally, Ashley says she was very grateful to her instructor for the support she received after undergoing her first death of a patient while on a clinical rotation. The instructor was able to share with Ashley her own experience and wisdom on how to help herself and the patient’s family get through such a difficult event; with her guidance and mentorship Ashley was able to deal with the sad situation. Personally, Ashley said it was a “blast” to have everyone including instructors, play ‘A Minute to Win It’ at their Christmas party.
While in school, Ashley faced and overcame some challenges. To begin with, her family experienced financial strain. As a farm family upsizing their operations, Ashley and her husband were used to her full-time income and attending such a demanding program meant Ashley was not able to work full-time. She is very grateful for winning a scholarship through the College awards program and for the option of creating a payment plan for tuition, as both helped to ease the financial strain. A second challenge was the time commitment needed to succeed in the program. As a parent of a young child, working part-time, and helping on the farm especially during the busy calving season, Ashley had to find a balance that ensured her success in the program and maintained her mental health. Although she realizes her decision is not for everyone, Ashley chose to not do homework or study until her child was in bed. This allowed her to have time with her little one, vital for any parent wanting to remain committed to an educational program. Ashley is also very grateful for the support of her husband as he helped her pursue her dream of becoming a nurse. He never hesitated when she broached the idea of returning to school after her maternity leave and he helped her survive many late-night study sessions. As she looks back on her child’s highlighter scribbles in her books she is able to smile and acknowledge that her story is one of true success!
Congratulations Ashley on fulfilling your dream of becoming a nurse and working in a healthcare field. Cumberland College is pleased to have been part of your journey.
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