Striving for Excellence – An EvergreenHealth nurse’s journey

Hannah graduated from the University of Washington with a Bachelor of Science in Nursing and joined EvergreenHealth’s Nursing Residency program in the fall of 2016. EvergreenHealth’s Nursing Residency program offers a cohort of new nurses a 12-week opportunity to take nurse preceptor led training courses, practice alongside fully established nurses and integrate into the hospital system.

“It was a program unlike anything offered elsewhere: it was an intentional and supportive way to take you from nursing student to a fully independent practicing nurse. Right from the start I felt welcomed and confident.”

Hannah joined EvergreenHealth’s Medical Surgical Unit specializing in care for post-operation surgical patients and medical care for patients with mental health conditions. A couple of years into the role, recognizing her inherent leadership, Hannah was asked to consider becoming a nurse preceptor – the educator of nurses in training.

“I took a nurse preceptor training course where EvergreenHealth’s education department helped me refine my leadership skills and step into my first experience as an educator. Training new nurses – having to explain the “why” – helped me to become a better nurse, and moreover, I felt good about giving back and helping new nursing residents make that same transition that I did when I first got started.”

Hannah’s development into a leader on her nursing floor didn’t stop there…a few months later she was approached about training to become a charge nurse. Charge nurses manage the flow of patients on the floor and provide leadership, constantly problem-solving and acting as a resource for other nurses. Hannah’s tenure as a charge nurse started just before the onset of healthcare’s greatest challenge: the COVID-19 pandemic.

“Throughout the pandemic I worked overnight shifts as a charge nurse on our designated COVID-19 floors. Every night we were challenged to be more collaborative and resourceful than ever before. Every night we would discuss learning opportunities and how to get better – even in the most harrowing moments, we were always striving for excellence.” 

For Hannah, “striving for excellence” isn’t just how she describes the culture at EvergreenHealth, it’s how she describes herself. Hannah aspires to go back to school for her master’s degree in nursing administration and continue to develop as a leader and contributor to her field.

“EvergreenHealth has given me every opportunity to grow and flourish – they’ve supported me every step of the way. To be part of an organization and community that cares so much about its healthcare staff, you feel really good coming to work here every day.”

On National Nurses Day, give to EvergreenHealth Foundation’s Clinical Excellence Fund to invest in nurses, like Hannah, and support nursing scholarships, certification exam preparation opportunities, training resources and education for our frontline staff. You can give back to the nurses that serve our community every day and help them invest in themselves.