The road to nursing for Kimberly Blackmon-Lee wasn’t direct, but it has been worth the wait. The 43-year-old vocational nursing graduate from American Career College-Ontario completed her dental assisting education over 20 years ago at ACC-Los Angeles. She worked as a dental assistant until just a couple years ago when she decided to pursue her original dream of becoming a nurse.
“ACC is the cream of the crop and I knew I would come back because they have everything set up for you,” Kimberly shared. “Nursing school was really challenging for me but I kept pushing through and here I am.”
While attending nursing school online during the pandemic had its challenges, Kimberly shared that she learned so much and felt it forced her to stay engaged by keeping her camera on and asking questions.
“I am a firm believer in manifestation and I had to push through and say ‘this is what I want to do’ and I did it,” Kimberly said, also crediting her cohort for their team work together during the past year.
Kimberly plans on pursuing her career in hospice nursing after witnessing compassionate care for her mother, who sadly passed away.
“My mom had a hospice nurse who was so amazing that it really inspired me because it’s so much about connecting with families and I really liked that,” Kimberly said.
Kimberly has no plans on slowing down anytime soon. Her next stop is taking BSN pre-requisite courses at a local community college to become a registered nurse.
“It’s never too late to go back to school,” Kimberly shared. “To be a nurse, you have to have compassion in your heart to help someone. Nursing is a team effort but if you’re willing, you’re able to be taught.”
And her parting advice for incoming nursing students is multi-pronged.
“Do your ATIs and ask questions,” she advised. “Stay engaged with your instructors and you need a team of people to lift you up and work together.”
ACC cannot guarantee employment. Programs vary by campus. The views and opinions expressed are those of the individuals and do not necessarily reflect the beliefs or position of the school or of any instructor or student.
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