Going the Distance to Become a Nurse

Aug. 4, 2014 - by Britney Lewis

Becoming A Nurse The Pioneer Way

By Melinda (Ablard ’90) Smith
Aug. 4, 2014
Vanessa Shulte icon

Vanessa Schulte is a true pioneer.

Not only is the Baldwin City resident from a pioneering family—she is a first-generation American whose parents are from Laos—but also she is the first in her family to complete a bachelor’s degree.

So when Schulte decided to return to college for a nursing degree it was fitting that she would choose the Accelerated Bachelor of Science in nursing (ABSN) program at MidAmerica Nazarene University, home of the Pioneers.

“I believe nurses embody MNU’s mission, the mission to have a ‘pioneering spirit’ by encompassing the drive and passion to move forward through any obstacles we face,” Schulte says. “Nurses live purposefully because they are providing care for those who are sick, in pain or even fighting for their very lives.”

Schulte learned early to embrace that pioneering spirit. Her youth was challenging at times because of what she calls her “culturally and ethnically different” upbringing.

But what Schulte once saw as an obstacle she now views as an advantage as she prepares to enter the nursing field.

“Others did not understand my cultural differences or even why my father and mother were difficult to understand at times,” she says. “I believe that being ethnically different than others allows me to see past a person’s physical appearance and behaviors and delve into their real problems and connect personally with them.”

Schulte’s pioneering spirit also has helped her garner a one-time $10,000 scholarship from MNU’s School of Nursing and Health Science through a grant from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation: New Careers in Nursing (RWJF NCIN) program. The MNU scholarship is awarded to select applicants who are from a population underrepresented in the nursing field, traditionally men and minorities, or who have significant financial need.  It is specifically designated for the ABSN program, which offers students the opportunity to earn a nursing degree in one year.

Although Schulte earlier earned a biology degree from Baker University, she opted to stay home with her then 2-month-old daughter after graduation. When she did enter the job market a few months later and was unable to find work in her field, she took an office job at a car dealership.

But Schulte’s husband, Brett, knew her heart wasn’t in office work. So he encouraged her to go back to school to pursue something more fulfilling. That something was healthcare.

Growing up, Schulte had accompanied her father, who was not proficient in English, to all his doctor’s appointments and had acted as his translator. However, it was her late grandfather who really inspired her to take the path she is now walking.

“My grandfather’s passing from gastric and colon cancer really sparked my urge to care for those who have cancer,” she says of her decision to become an oncology nurse.

When Schulte finishes her training at MNU, she wants not only to work with cancer patients but also to incorporate the latest technology and holistic practices into her nursing.

And she wants to share that pioneering spirit with others.

“I believe that nursing is the most humble of all careers,” Schulte says. “It is a calling by God to follow His way and champion individuals in need. To me, that life means going the distance to touch just one life for the better when they are unable to do so for themselves.”  

MidAmerica Nazarene University has received the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation: New Careers in Nursing (RWJF NCIN) grant the past six years and uses the money to fund Accelerated Bachelor of Science in nursing scholarships. Over the years, the school has awarded 45 NCIN scholarships. The goal of the RWJF grant is to help alleviate the nursing shortage, to diversify the workplace and to bolster faculty and leadership. 

 

 

MNU News

Tuesday, July 28
Recent News
List
Grid
Archives
NYC Scholarship Winner 2015
Scholarship Winner Always Wanted to Attend MNU

Scholarship Winner Always Wanted to Attend MNU

Dania Unruh had given up on her dream of attending MNU. Based on finances the senior from Garden City, Kansas figured she would attend community…

Read More
Pete Robinson
Army Chaplain named Alum of the Year

Army Chaplain named Alum of the Year

Army Capt. Pete Robinson (’04) wanted nothing to do with the military or hospitals when he graduated from MNU with a BA in youth and family ministry. Growing up in a household in which his father,…

Read More
MWROC-LN-072012-0668
Video: Mark Wood Orchestra Camp

Video: Mark Wood Orchestra Camp

It's the sixth year they've come to Olathe and MNU to learn from some of the world's best electric orchestra artists. And they love MNU's Bell Center and the experience they get from the Mark Wood…

Read More
Ranked #1
MNU Number 1 in Kansas in Money's Best Colleges 2015-2016

MNU Number 1 in Kansas in Money's Best Colleges 2015-2016

MidAmerica Nazarene University was named number 1 in Kansas among public and private colleges and universities in Money magazine’s “Money’s…

Read More
BlakeWalker
FCA Huddle Underway at MNU

FCA Huddle Underway at MNU

Assistant Football Coach Blake Walker, says the Fellowship of Christian Athletes (FCA) was the bridge for him from a 19-year-old student athlete searching for his place in the world, to a sold-out…

Read More
KCRM
SERVEteams Assist KC Rescue Mission

SERVEteams Assist KC Rescue Mission

MNU SERVEteams Squad'66 and Voices of Praise had the privilege of joining the ministry of the Kansas City Rescue Mission recently for an evening. Voices of Praise lead more than 80 men in worship.…

Read More
Chris Crawford
Professor On Medical Staff for Paralympic Swimming World Championships

Professor On Medical Staff for Paralympic Swimming World Championships

Assistant Professor Chris Crawford (’00) will soon land in Glasgow, Scotland to serve on the medical staff for the 2015 International Paralympic…

Read More
Jeremi Wonch
Alum Wins Presidential Award for Excellence in Math and Science

Alum Wins Presidential Award for Excellence in Math and Science

Jeremi (Heiney '88) Wonch is one of two Kansas teachers winning a Presidential Award for Excellence in Mathematics and Science Teaching. Chosen by a…

Read More
Mark Wood
Trans-Siberian Orchestra Founder Kicks Off 6th Annual Rock Orchestra Camp July 12- 19

Trans-Siberian Orchestra Founder Kicks Off 6th Annual Rock Orchestra Camp July 12- 19

International recording artist and music education advocate Mark Wood, one of the founding members of the multiplatinum group Trans-Siberian…

Read More
Sports
MNU Women's Soccer Camps

MNU Women's Soccer Camps

(click title for details)

 
Wade Watkins Joins MNU XC/T&F Program

Wade Watkins Joins MNU XC/T&F Program

MNU Athletics is pleased to announce the addition of Wade Watkins to the MNU Track and Field/Cross Country program as Associate Head Coach...(click title for more)

 
Brittney Kellar Promoted to Assistant AD

Brittney Kellar Promoted to Assistant AD

Brittney Kellar has been promoted to Assistant Athletics Director for Business, Marketing and Event Management...(click title for more)

 
Latest Photos
The early construction of our booth
The early construction of our booth
The early construction of our booth
Our booth was complete with a looping video & prezi about MNU.
The complete booth! Our steel structure was created by local artist and alum David Platter and topped with images of Kansas City and the MNU campus.
With plenty of space to simply hang out, we designed our booth to be an open and welcoming place.