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

Imagine you have been living a transient lifestyle your entire life. You were exiled from your home for identifying with the LGBTQIA community because your identity didn’t coincide with your family’s standards or belief systems. English is your second language so it has been difficult for you to look for resources. You’ve been on a waitlist for low-income housing for many years; the waitlist seems insurmountable and priority goes to families with children. The last meal you had was a few days ago, because the local community center you attend discontinued giving out food boxes. The tent you have been living in was torn down and the authorities took all your belongings. To get your belongings back, you need to pay a fine and for storage fees. It is difficult for you to maintain a job because you do not have access to showers or public transportation. You have been repeatedly assaulted and robbed, and it is difficult to seek affordable medical care. The medical professionals you’ve seen in the past have been judgmental and have belittled your symptoms, therefore you’ve stopped looking for medical care. You continue to live in these circumstances, not knowing if it is going to better or worsen, you just struggle to get by.

These images of instability and hopelessness summarize the population that I work with on a daily basis. Although these individuals are resilient, many of them die as a result of inaccessibility to proper social systems such as housing and healthcare. As a prospective provider, I strive to understand every angle of an individual’s situation, recognize the barriers they face, and offer them consistency, reassurance, and stability.

Injustice, inequity, and other factors that contribute to inaccessibility to healthcare fuel my passion to serve our patients better. In the words of Mahatma Gandhi, “You must be the change you wish to see in the world”.

EMILY from Oregon
College Junior
Johns Hopkins University