Katrina Sanders, RN, ONC, is a clinical coordinator at Novant Health. In addition to being a nurse for 14 years, Sanders is a busy mom of twin one-year-old girls, a five-year-old, and a 10-year-old while still earning professional credentials that add value to her hospital and work unit.

Sanders is committed to going above and beyond the call of duty for her patients and their families. She has been known to go to get their lunch from the cafeteria, locate a recliner for a family member to sleep in, or share DVD’s and laptops for family members to play with while they wait for a loved one.

Today she shares how she became interested in a nursing career at a young age and what inspires her to be the best nurse she can be.

What made you become a nurse?

I love nursing because I am able to provide comfort, passion and encouragement to my patients. At the end of the day, I feel like I gave my heart and soul to make a difference in someone’s life. I have wanted to be a nurse since I was in the 10th grade. I have a strong desire to help people and care for them in their time of need. For me, there was no moment of divine intervention, no following the footsteps of an admired parent or relative, but rather a gradual realization that nursing would be the perfect job for someone who has a big heart like I do.

What inspires you about nursing?

What inspires me about nursing is that as a nurse you can take care of the patient’s physical needs like dressing wounds and giving medications. However, as a nurse, you can also comfort them when they are scared, read a book to them or play a game with them. I am inspired to be a nurse because I know I can more than physically heal a patient.

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What do you think are the most important qualities for a nurse to have?  

The most important qualities of being a nurse include being attentive, being a great listener and being sensitive to people’s needs. Why? Because you can’t properly care for someone if you do not know what is physically, mentally and emotionally going on with them.  In order to give someone holistic care you need to know their story.

Where do you see the future of nursing headed?

I see nurses starting to practice at the fullest extent of their education and training. Nurses will need to be skilled in the use of computer technology.

What goals do you still have for your career?

I plan to graduate in December with my BSN and then pursue my Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) degree.

What advice would you give to other minority nurses?

Be open to new experiences and do not be afraid of change.  Have an open mind to whatever experiences come along and take advantage of the opportunities as they come your way.

Denene Brox is a freelance writer based in Kansas City. 

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