I graduated from nursing school with my diploma in 1988 from St. Clare’s Mercy Hospital School of Nursing. Originally when I began working as a registered nurse, I cared for women and their families throughout their childbearing experiences. I continued working in this area for ten years in many Canadian provinces. Needless to say, I met and cared for many families as they experienced this exciting and happy; yet vulnerable time in their lives. I came to realize very quickly how critical nurses’ role is in supporting women through this monumental life event. Nurses are the health care professionals that spend the most time at the bedside of laboring women. Nurses have a unique and specialized body of knowledge which they draw from to guide their nursing practice and, therefore, have the capability to positively influence the care of women during the birth of their children, which I believe is key to achieving positive birth outcomes.
My clinical experiences gave me the desire to pursue new knowledge, further my education, and improve my nursing practice. I therefore obtained a Bachelors of Nursing in 1998 and a Master’s of Nursing in 2002. I began a PhD in Nursing 5 years ago and now am in the data analysis phase of my research study. I am honored to be once again awarded this scholarship by the Canadian Nurses Foundation.