Nursing: A Profession Of Healers … And So Much More
Although nursing wasn’t a career aspiration in childhood, one of Jo’s very first toys – the Nurse Barbie Careers Doll – proved prescient.
What first drew Jo to the profession is a little bit of a blur now, but she’s always loved helping people and nursing offered her the opportunity to do different things. As she grew in her career, she felt a sense of accomplishment that drove her to continue. Jo has worked in many segments of the field, from Labor and Delivery to ER to ICU, and even as a flight nurse.
“I’ve been a nurse for so long it is part of who I am.”
Jo grew up and worked in Illinois, where she was a hospital nurse and an American Heart Association volunteer. She was also an adjunct faculty member at three different colleges. She loved the feeling of explaining academic concepts to students and seeing the “lightbulb of knowledge” go off.
Many hospital colleagues said she would be a great CPR instructor. She gave it a whirl, enjoyed it and got involved at a wider level. She still teaches CPR classes at her church and in the community.
Jo has been in her role as a Resuscitation Learning Director at American Heart Association for a little over a year. She still maintains her skills as a nurse.
“Keeping my license as a nurse gives me credibility in my position at AHA since primarily the audience I
work with is the medical profession.” A big chunk of Jo’s role is also interacting with the international training network, working with health professionals in many countries to establish AHA training.
Jo emphasizes how important it is for everyone to learn CPR because CPR can and does save lives. “We are getting more and more data on that. Even if all you get out of a class is call 9-1-1, it’s better than nothing. CPR empowers people to take action.”
During Nurses Week, we salute Jo and all of her colleagues in the nursing profession. You are “everyday superheroes”!