I'm applying to go to the nurse practitioner program this coming fall and would like some feedback on my application essay.
The questions I need to address:
1) What is your motivation for wanting to become a PHCNP?
2a) What professional and personal attributes from your work and/or academic background do you bring to the PHCNP program?
2b) How are these attributes relevant to your future role as a PHCNP in the health care delivery system?
3) Please describe your understanding of primary health care. How are NPs important in the delivery of primary health care to diverse populations?
(Replies must be typed and not to exceed 4 pages double spaced, 12 point font print in total. Only the first 4 pages will be read. Replies to each question need not be of equal length. Number your answers to correspond to the questions).
1) I plan to broaden my scope of practice and comprehension as a registered nurse in order to play a larger role in determining and managing care for my clients. I enjoy the concept of increased responsibility associated with being a nurse practitioner. I wish to help further preventative health care in the community through support and education as my main interests lie in primary health care, community health care, and geriatric health. Becoming a nurse practitioner can help me to provide my clients with more individual attention, encouragement and incorporation of their disease into their individual lifestyle. I enjoy patient consistency. It allows me to develop a greater rapport with my clients, which helps me to develop a more in depth plan of care for client specific needs as I have a greater knowledge about their personal health history, attributes, and ability to manage their illness.
I strive to become more knowledgeable in nursing in order to provide the best care I can to my clients. In order to excel at my profession and passion I need to do everything I can to make myself better. "Once you decide on your occupation, you must immerse yourself in your work... You have to fall in love with your work... You must dedicate your life to mastering your skill. That's the secret of success and is the key to being regarded honorably" (2).
I enjoy how being a nurse doesn't just stop at my job. I am proud how my knowledge of health care can help people outside the clinical setting such as my family, friends and co workers. I can provide advice and direction when they are having difficulties with their health and well-being. Expanding my knowledge also affects my own personal wellness and allows me to be more attuned to my own needs and the ability to make healthy decisions and lifestyle choices.
My interest in health care was due to my father who was a chiropractor in my home town. When it came time to apply for university I had difficulty picking which field of health care I wished to dedicate myself to. It was my father who suggested becoming a nurse. He told me the health care system could always use more nurses, as they were the backbone of patient care. He stated there were many areas of nursing I could practice in, however, if I wanted to play a larger role in the management and determining of patient care I should look into becoming a nurse practitioner.
I first completed a honor's bachelor degree in science, specializing in genetics with a minor in biochemistry at McMaster University. I loved biology and the physiology and anatomy of the human body. I felt this degree gave me a great basis in which to build my nursing knowledge on when I got in to Western University's school of nursing in 2006.
When I was in my community health and long term care placements during my first two years of Western I was asking myself, "How can anyone wish to work in these areas?" I had visions of working in an acute care setting in a fast paced environment full of top of the line technology and a multitude of other health care professionals. It wasn't until my placement on the nephrology unit at Victoria Hospital, in 4th year of nursing that I started to realize that acute care may not be my area of passion. I enjoyed forming rapport with my patients and getting to know them on a detailed basis, something that was difficult with high turnover. When caring for my patients, the amount of health care teaching that was needed was enormous. Care plans that came easily to myself and the other hospital staff were very difficult for patients to grasp due to their lifestyle, ability to access resources, and background knowledge on their diseases and diagnoses. Patients would be discharged after receiving a short information session about their updated medication list, follow up appointments and summary of what was done for them during their stay. I found myself wondering afterwards if they were following the advice and plan of care that had been provided to them, and if our health teaching was viable in their home life given any restrictions or barriers they faced.
2a) I've worked in long term care since graduating in April 2010. This has allowed me to be in a supervisory position. I direct health care aides and registered practical nurses in the management and delivery of personalized care to our residents.
I've very adaptive to new technology such as programs used for online documentation and electronic MARS. Other registered staff in my facility often come to me for problem solving and trouble shooting with our online documentation program.
The health care aides I supervise have described me as being very compassionate, intelligent and empathetic. I always put residents first and I take the time to listen to residents, no matter how busy my schedule may be. I work well under pressure and in a solo or team environment.
2b) To be successful as a nurse practitioner I need to be able to be a strong leader, knowledgeable and adaptive to the ever changing health care environment and needs of my clients. The amount of diverse clients in health care today is only getting larger with our aging population and the baby boomers, more young adults with mental illnesses, and greater amount of clients with cultural differences and beliefs.
After expressing my professional goals to others, I'm often asked why I want to bother with the extra time, expense, and workload involved in achieving a master's degree and working as a nurse practitioner. I inform them that I want to better myself as a registered nurse and as a person, to commit myself to my profession as much as I can. In turn I can then pass on my knowledge and skills to others around me and help build a better community as a whole. I believe that a strong and prosperous community is only as good as its health and education and I wish to do as much contribution as I can towards this.
3) Primary health care incorporates the traditional health care system with an extended approach and spectrum of services that focuses on all factors that can impact a client's wellness.
Nurse practitioners are important in the delivery of primary health care as they are a leading service in the promotion of health and wellness through health education. They are flexible to the needs of their clients, they are able to see them in acute care settings, clinical offices, or even able to make house calls if required. I work alongside a nurse practitioner whose knowledge base, resources, and dedication to her craft encompasses everything that I've envisioned a nurse practitioner to be and that I wish to become. Watching her work with our residents, providing them with support and education about their illnesses and helping them with their concerns is very inspiring.
In closing, I will continue to strive to better myself as a person and as a professional nurse and I continue to dedicate myself to achieving the best possible care I can for those in need. As sung by Paul Brandt, "don't tell me the sky's the limit when there are footprints on the moon" (1).
Thank you for your time and consideration.
1) Brandt, Paul. "There's A World Out There." That's The Truth. Reprise Records, 1999. CD.
2) Jiro Dreams of Sushi. Dir. David Gelb. 2011. Netflix. Web. Magnolia Pictures, 14 December 2013.
Thank you for any feedback!