Write an essay where you tell us about what inspired you to pursue a nursing degree.

In the university setting and beyond, I was always interested in the intersection of social justice and health. My interest in healthcare was always necessitated by the injustices I saw around me. No one in my family has a primary care provider, and I have found that this is quite common between me and my friends who share similar cultural and economic backgrounds. For my friends who do seek healthcare, specifically in mental health, they are disappointed to find that there are so few mental healthcare providers of color. A friend once told me in exasperation, “My therapist is wonderful, but sometimes I don’t think she understands me. I feel like what I’m going through is just on a different level.” He says this not only because his provider is not an immigrant, but they are also not queer. While I am in no way suggesting they are an ineffective provider, I can say that, for my friend, it would make for a more safe, comfortable and therapeutic relationship. This is especially the case for more marginalized groups.

Ultimately, it would be a dream to open a clinic that highlighted the voices of these marginalized groups. It would be my dream to have a clinic that was accessible to all income levels so that people who sought mental health care would have a place to go. Not only that, but the clinic would mandate training for all staff to be inclusive of patients regardless of age, gender, race, sexual orientation, immigration status and anything in between. While this is a long-term goal, in the short term I know that I would do everything I could to provide this type of care to my patients wherever I end up, and that I would advocate for them no matter which provider they may encounter.

Camille from Virginia
College Freshman
Virginia Commonwealth University