John Vanderlee Award

I entered nursing as a change in the direction of my life. I grew up in a health care family – my father is a family physician and my mother a nurse. For years I had pursued becoming a doctor, but unlike many people I also started a family while pursuing this dream. There came a point about two years ago where I realized that my pursuit of medicine was no longer sustainable – I had a wife, three children, and had been rejected twice from medical school. After some soul searching, and with a university degree under my belt, I applied to the Advanced Standing Track program at Queen’s University, and found that in the end, nursing will probably end up being a better fit for me than medicine.

If you had asked me at the start my nursing studies why I became a nurse, I could not have answered the question. Now, I can say that I am in the process of becoming a nurse, because it is a personally rewarding profession with enormous potential for further growth, study and education. In nursing, I feel I can realize my potential, and also have the flexibility to pursue my interests in the profession as they change over time.