2020 The Year of the Nurse!

Over the past few months I have been working on an exciting project with the Registered Nurses Foundation of Ontario.  (We will be launching this project officially later this week!)

Earlier this year RNFOO contacted me because they were looking for a way to help raise money for nursing scholarships and shine awareness on 2020 being the year of the nurse.  Little did they know at that time that this would be the year the world would need nurses more than ever.

I asked the board members of RNFOO last week if they could please share a story with me about one of their scholarship recipients.  I know how supportive our glamjulz community is, so I thought that before we launch our big project you might like to read a story from a recipient and gain some knowledge as to how RNFOO supports students who want to dedicate their lives to the welfare of you and me, our friends, our families and all of the people we love.

Introducing –  Kariz Sisson.  She is a Registered Practical Nurse working at the Carpenter Hospice in Burlington Ontario while attending McMaster University’s RPN to BScN program.

Here are some questions we asked Kariz –

1)      Tell us about the stage you are at in your studies and your goals for the next couple of years.

“I will be entering level 4 of the RPN to BScN program at McMaster in the fall. I enjoy working at the bedside, providing a holistic approach to care and hope to continue to expand my knowledge, skill and judgement over the next couple of years. Eventually, my goal will be to pursue a role that will allow me to expand my scope of influence and have a positive impact on policies that improve the quality and accessibility of care. I am grateful that the nursing profession is ripe with opportunities in many different areas. I’m not sure where my career will take me, but I am confident that it will be a fulfilling career full of challenges and triumphs.”

2)      Can you tell us about your current position at Carpenter Hospice?

“For the last six years, I have cared for patients at the end of life at the Carpenter Hospice. I continued to work at the hospice full-time as an RPN while enrolled in the RPN to BScN program. Currently, I am working a temporary full-time line as an RPN in the hospital setting, supporting their capacity to deliver patient care during the COVID-19 pandemic. I am so fortunate to have been given this opportunity. It has truly accelerated my growth and learning.”

3)      What are some of the challenges that you face as a student?

“The last few years have been a whirlwind. I’ve kept my schedule busy with volunteering, working, class, homework and family. I have learned the importance of time management in order to allot the appropriate amount of time and energy into each of the aforementioned priorities. There are some weeks where it all feels overwhelming, but I have a great support system of friends, family and colleagues who cheer me on and push me to achieve my potential.”

4)      How did the RNFOO scholarship you received help you?

“The RNFOO has helped me in more ways than one. I had a period of time with no income due to COVID-19, and the RNFOO scholarship provided me with financial support that I can use towards my tuition, thus reducing my student loans. Additionally, it has validated the work I have achieved and accomplished throughout my academic and professional career. Receiving the RNFOO scholarship encourages me to continue to strive for excellence.”

5)      How have you been affected by the COVID19 pandemic?

“The COVID-19 pandemic resulted in a change in my expected graduation date. I was accepted to “fast-track” my program, which meant I could complete the program by December of this year instead of April 2021. Unfortunately, due to COVID-19, clinical placements were cancelled for the spring/summer semester, which meant my expected graduation date is once again April 2021. With spring/summer clinical placements on hold, I chose to enroll in spring/summer online classes to satisfy my elective requirements. COVID-19 also resulted in a loss of income, but I was fortunate to have received the RNFOO scholarship as well as having been hired in the hospital to support staffing needs.”

6)      What would you like Ontarians to know about RNFOO?

“The RNFOO is an incredible and important organization that both recognizes and supports current and future nurses and health-care professionals. As an RPN to BScN student, I was so worried about how I was going to support myself and pay for tuition. Having heard that the RNFOO invests in the advancement of nurses, I was relieved to know that my hard work and dedication to the profession could be recognized.”

The next time I stand on my front porch clanking my pots and pans I will thank Kariz and all of the other brave men and women out there in the field who are not only caring for our communities but keeping up with their studies to practice health care with a standard of excellence.

Monica XO

If you are not on our email list yet, please join!  We’ll be launching our project with RNFOO to all of our subscribers later this week.

Want to learn a little more about RNFOO and hear from a past recipient who is now on the board and doing incredible work herself?  Click HERE to listen to my “Get to know her” live interview with Susan Bookey Bassett RN, BScN, MED, PhD .


Sue Bookey-Bassett

So glad we can profile our RNFOO scholarship winners! Thank you Monica for helping promote RNFOO’s important work!


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