Write an essay where you tell us about what drives you in your pursuit of your graduate degree.

My Five Year Plan
“Where do you see yourself in five years?” That is the question I’ve been asked time and time again while in nursing school, job interviews, and monthly rounding with my Nurse Managers. I did not know. I worked so hard to graduate and become the nurse I wanted to be, that I was just excited to be where I was. A mentor once said to me, “It is okay not to want more.” After being “volun-told” my next move would be to assume the role of preceptor and then charge nurse, I began to ask myself the same question, “where do you see yourself in five years?” This time that same question seemed to hold so much more significance.
Working as a staff nurse for the last few years, I’ve learned that advocating can be one of the largest factors affecting a patient’s outcome. Becoming a Nurse Practitioner is a way to have greater input guiding the futures of my patients. Rather than carrying out the orders, creating orders and providing options is a privilege. It provides a way to collaborate with multidisciplinary teams that is not available to floor nurses. I believe that Nurse Practitioners can bridge the gap between doctors and floor nurses. It is a unique role that comes with enormous responsibility.
I am self-motivated, determined to excel and take pride in doing the best job I can. I consider knowledge to be infinite and that furthering my nursing education would give me a greater understanding of the healthcare system overall as well. One of the most crucial parts of healthcare a Nurse Practitioner can influence is preventative care. I’ve seen quick discharges and readmissions become a daily occurrence in the hospital setting. Many of the patients I have interacted with do not have a primary care physician; this is the main reason that diagnoses are overlooked.
I am ready to move forward in my career, now knowing where I want to be in five years, following my aspiration to become a Family Nurse Practitioner and provide care that promotes healing and wellness.

Ashley from Tennessee
East Tennessee State University