I conducted my interview with Ruth Ivcic, RN.
Why did you select this individual to interview?
My whole life, I knew I wanted to help people. Every since I was young, I had dreamed that after college I would pursue a career in pharmacy, stereotypically working at a CVS or Walgreens filling patient prescriptions and counting out pills. It was not until my freshman year of college that I had a sudden change of heart, and completely removed myself from the idea of pharmacy before picking up a second major in psychology (in addition to biochemistry) and switching over to the pre-medicine track. However, I am still not really sure that I want to pursure medical school post-graduation, because I have absolutely no idea what I want to specialize in or even what capacity I want to help others. One option to work in the medical field without becoming doctor is to become a nurse, which led me to interview my aunt Ruth Ivcic, who is an RN in Berea, OH. I distinctly remember her taking care of me when I burned my hand on a fire during one of our family gatherings, and how calm she seemed while knowing exactly what to do. She has alternated between a few hospitals in her thirty years of nursing, so I figured she would have a laundry list of experiences over the diversity of several different environments. I was eager to learn more.
Describe the major responsibilities associated with their current role
Her job has many duties. Not only is she responsible for administering patient medications and monitoring their vitals, she is responsible for communicating with other members of the healthcare team and keeping records in order to reference later on. All facilities run slightly different according to their size or patient base, so there were times where she felt overwhelmed. “Next thing you know, you have three different patients each pounding their call button and you still have to check on four other patients before you can get to them”. Because the job is very hands on, registered nurses truly need to have patience and understanding. As anybody who works with the public can tell you, sometimes there are simply nasty and rude people, but you have to be able to keep your cool and provide service with a smile on your face regardless. When asked about the outlook for nursing in the future, she responded “Yep, we’ll still be here”. With the numerous technological advances and focus on health, people are living longer, and there will always be a need for nurses to assist those who need it. Though technology can help monitor vitals and even administer medication, they will never be able to mimic the care the a real-life nurse can deliver.
Discuss how the person prepared for this role, and if they provided you with any advice as what you might be able to do to prepare for a similar career
When asked about other possible career options available for somebody training to become a nurse, she simply responded “Not many”. Because healthcare is very specific both to patients and professionals, in addition to the constantly changing technology and advancements, committing oneself to nursing does not allow for much variability. The information learned could easily propel a career in emergency response or even going on to medical school, but becoming an RN does not provide any shortcuts to the other professions. She advises those going into medical based careers to be prepared to never stop learning. There will always be new methods and improvements to learn, and while practicing you are required to take X amount of hours of supplemental education to ensure you stay an informed professional. Also, she says not to worry too much about the difficulty. “If it is something you love and truly feel connected to, don’t worry about it”. Even though there were times she was definitely shaken up, she knew she wanted to become a nurse, and her drive helped her push through into the career she loves today.
Summarize any insights from the interview that might be helpful in your academic or career preparation
After the interview, I definitely had a new found respect for nursing. After switching to the pre-medicine track, I had become hyperfocused on becoming a doctor and what was I going to do about med school and what if I didn’t get in? I let all of these questions haunt me until I finally realized everything will work out. Her commitment to her passion gave her the strength to become a nurse, and I feel a similar drive will help me to achieve my goals. Even though I do not think nursing is something I personally would be good at or want to pursue, talking to her about her experiences was certainly interesting, and listening to somebody who loves what they do talk about their experiences is inspiring. I was feeling a bit burnt out before interviewing her, but she helped me remember why I am here at school, and that I need to continue to work hard to get where I want to go.