Nursing is and always has been my lifestyle choice Laura Sams

I was born into a family of caregivers. My grandmother raised 8 children at the same time caring for my grandfather’s parents and brother. She showed my mother what a compassionate, loving, kind woman should be. My mother raised five children starting at the age of 16. She went to nursing school full time during the day, took care of my father’s parents and grandparents and worked full time. She has been my inspiration since I can remember. I fought the nursing career for the first 2 years of college. I thought since I was great at math, I should do something in business. I ignored the fact that I have been a nurse since I was 10 years old. At the age of 10, my family adopted my cousins. They were both premature babies that always needed that extra care. At the age of 14, I spent the entire summer taking care of my grandmother and grandfather. My grandmother suffered from a stroke that left her paralyzed on her left side and blind. My grandfather was diagnosed with stage 4 lung cancer with a 6 months to live with chemo and radiation. At the age of 17, I drove to my great-grandparents house, to bath my Grammy and put her to bed every other day. Even after all this experience, I still fought the genetic gene to be a nurse. I realized that there was no fighting and I needed to do what I was meant to when I started at the hospital in 2002. I started as a unit secretary and knew from the moment I talked to my first patient, that I was meant to be a nurse.

This is me receiving the Daisy Award 2014

Considering since I have been nursing since the age of 10, I learn the best from life experiences. ”Cognitivist teaching methods aim to assist students in assimilating new information to existing knowledge, ad enabling them to make the appropriate modifications to their existing intellectual framework to accommodate that information.” (Berkeley Graduate Division, 2017) Throughout my nursing career, I have learned so much from patients and/or families that I have taken care of. While working in the ICU, I saw what a flash pulmonary edema looks like from getting to much fluids. I know that while taking care of a patient that is dying, its okay to cry with the family. I take each of these experiences and have applied to the next patient. Also, I have taught new nurses what I have learned to help them with their patients. I am a lifetime learner and I teach using the Cognitivist method. “Cognitive strategies work best when learner’s task is in middle range, and an intermediate level of cognitive processing is required.” (Mastrian, McGonigle, & Mahan, 2010)

My mom, my inspiration


Berkeley Graduate Division. (2017). Retrieved from

Mastrian, K., McGonigle, D., & Mahan, W. L. (2010). Integrating Technology in Nursing Education: Tools for the Knowledge Era. Sudbury: Jones & Bartlett Learning.

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