Vanessa Van Bewer
I am a registered nurse and a doctoral student entering the 3rd year of my PhD program at the University of Manitoba. After completing my Bachelor of Nursing, I never thought I would return to school to complete a master’s degree, let alone a PhD. The undergraduate program in nursing was daunting enough! Yet, after working several years as a registered nurse in a variety of different settings, I longed to learn more. After completing a Master’s of Nursing, I taught for several years as an instructor in nursing education and enjoyed working with Indigenous students. Seeing Indigenous nursing students succeed is important to me as a Métis nurse, and has inspired my doctoral research. For my PhD research, I intend to explore how Indigenous knowledge and perspectives can be integrated in the nursing curriculum. Doing so is not only important to fulfilling our ethical responsibilities but is also an important step towards reconciliation.
I originally became a nurse because I thought it would be a good career, one which would allow me to provide for my family, and help others. Now, I realize that the sky is the limit as a nurse, and the day I graduated from nursing school marked but the beginning of a greater journey. Thank you to the Canadian Nurses Foundation, and in particular to the TD Aboriginal Nursing Fund Award. Your belief and support of Indigenous nurses is crucial to the vision of a better Canada.