Success is defined differently by everyone who seeks it. Erin Kirkpatrick, a nursing student at The College at Brockport, defines success as making a difference in the lives of others, through hard work, compassion and caring. A Brockport education, along with extracurricular activities, has afforded Erin the opportunities necessary to become the person, and nurse, she dreams of being.
Erin chose to pursue nursing for a simple reason: "I needed a profession that would be both challenging and rewarding, and I've found that balance in nursing," she said. Erin's dream job is to become a nurse practitioner with a focus on maternity and neonatology. A member of the Honors Program, Erin chose Brockport for the competitiveness and quality of the nursing program. She is very proud of her accomplishments as she is on track to complete her second year in the program.
When asked about a life-changing experience, Erin did not hesitate in discussing her five-week study abroad experience in Costa Rica. Her observational internship was in San Jose at El Hospital Nacional del Niños (The National Children's Hospital). She observed the daily operation of the hospital, shadowed doctors and nurses and especially enjoyed her experience in the NICU (neonatal intensive care unit). "It taught me that life is precious and fleeting, so there should be more people out there ready and willing to nurture and protect it," she said.
Brockport has shaped Erin as an academic standout and a compassionate, well-rounded person. She recognizes her learning experiences at Brockport-not only in the classroom but also outside-shaping the person she is today. In her eyes, a Brockport student should experience "a midnight movie at the Strand theatre, coffee at Java Junction, a play or musical and a hockey game."
Erin's journey of compassion and caring began at Brockport, and her experiences here will jumpstart her into the career of her dreams. "It is truly amazing and inspiring to see the strength, skill and confidence that nurses must exude, and I can only hope to aspire to be the same way in all aspects of my life, both professionally and personally," said Erin. "To me, nursing isn't just a profession, it's a lifestyle."