Shante' A., BSN, RN - NICU

NRMy career path as a nurse at Vanderbilt University Medical Center began in July 2018 as a Nurse Resident in the Neonatal ICU. After 10 months at the bedside in the NICU, I was approached by management to consider interviewing for Shift Lead/Charge. After interviewing for a Shift Leader/Charge position in July of 2019 and receiving it, I began orientation to shift leader in November 2019. After a year of RN 2, I began working on my RN3. As of November 2020, I submitted my RN 3 and received notification it was approved as of December 2020. As a means of furthering my career path, I am studying to obtain my CCRN. 

I chose Vanderbilt because it was my heart’s desire to work in a Level 4 NICU and at a premier research hospital. Vanderbilt met those requirements and the outstanding leadership I witnessed during my time as a resident made it a clear choice for me. I knew I needed to be at Vanderbilt in order to maximize my potential as a nurse. 

Vanderbilt University Medical Center’s Nurse Residency Program supported my transition to practice by providing clarity of the culture of Vanderbilt. It allowed me to gain an understanding of the internal processes of Vanderbilt and its mission. The program, and its leadership, further supported my transition to practice by sharing information on the various committees that were available at Vanderbilt.  They introduced me to the idea of taking the CCRN, explained the process, and disclosed the benefits of completing it. The experience meant a lot to me. The program equipped me with the ability to connect my nursing skills with the emotional and mental capacity needed for effective practice as a nurse. The program helped to build my self-confidence and develop the resilience needed to effectively practice. It afforded me the opportunity to see the invested interest Vanderbilt’s leadership has in the successes of its nurses. The guidance provided helped me to embrace the transition to practice with confidence as opposed to hesitation.   

I am proud to work at Vanderbilt because I see the difference we make inpatient care and within the community. I am afforded the opportunity to witness Vanderbilt’s progress to combine transformative learning programs and discoveries to make an impact on patient care. I love going to work knowing we are one of the best research hospitals in the nation and every day someone somewhere, within Vanderbilt, is thinking of ways to help advance medicine in some capacity.  

The rewards of practice always seem to outweigh its challenges. I’m grateful for the opportunity to make a difference as a NICU nurse and the Vanderbilt University Medical Center’s Nurse Residency Program had a huge part to play in laying the foundation I am allowed to build upon daily.