Interview with Nurse Nancy T-J

April 21, 2008
By
Nancy T-J is a nurse at Good Samaritan Hospital in Illinois. As a nurse, she makes sure patients always get whatever they need such as food and water, or medicine. If you have ever been to a hotspital, you probably have seen how hard nurses have to work to get everything done, but there are still probably many things you don't know about this job. Mrs. T-J was interviewed about her occupation so we can all understand what it is really like to be a nurse.

Question: Why did you decide to become a nurse?

Answer: I decided to become a nurse when I was six because I wanted to help people. And then when I was in high school, I was in the hospital a few times and that just made me sure I wanted to be a nurse to put people at ease who are nervous, scared, and sick.

Question: Do you enjoy doing your job? Why or why not?

Answer: I enjoy the part of the job that deals with helping patients, families, and my peers get through very stressful days. It's a challenge but it's always worth it to feel like you helped somebody at the end of the day. A big part of the job, unfortunately, is also paperwork, and that's the part I don't like because it makes me stay late.

Question: What is the average yearly salary for your job?

Answer: I know some people make less than me and some people make more than me but I would say hospital nurses probably make between 60 and 80 thousand a year if they're full-time. I know if they're a clinic nurse or a school nurse, they make less.

Question: Is your job stressful for you? If so, what factors cause stress?

Answer: Yes, my job is stressful because I deal with patients and doctorswho are in the middle of very stressful situations. I have to help them get through it and provide excellent care.

Question: What are some skills or traits you need to do your job well?

Answer: Traits, you have to caring and generous and empathetic. Skills, you have to be able to problem solve, have critical thinking skills, you have to have excellent math skills, and assessment/ observation skills.

Question: Are you always busy at work? If you have spare time, what do you usually do?

Answer: I'm usually busy at work, but on the rare occasion that I'm not, there's usually data to collect or I can read the nursing journals at work to keep my knowledge current.

Question:What is the working environment like at your hospital?

Answer: I work on a unit with lots of friendly, generous people. We're like a family, we have our good moments and our bad. We usually all get along, but even when we don't, we work as a team.

Question: What is some advice you would give to young people considering becoming a nurse?

Answer: I would say go and spend some time in a hospital, whether it's volunteering or getting a job as say, a transporter of in the gift shop to see if you are comfortable with the hospital environment and serving people. This kind of job is not just about the money, you have to truly care about people and want to help them. If you don't truly care and wamt to help people, then you will not be happy being a nurse.

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