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Shriners Children’s Inspires Next Generation of Nurses

nurse Olivia outside wearing scrubs

Olivia (pictured) was inspired to become a nurse after receiving personalized burn care at Shriners Children's Boston.

For the past 22 years, being a nurse has been ranked as the top trusted profession in the nation, according to Gallup’s 2024 Honesty and Ethics Poll. Shriners Children’s Boston is highlighting the importance of this profession during Nurse Appreciation Week and is encouraging the next generation to consider a nursing career.

Olivia, a former patient at Shriners Children’s Boston, came to the hospital when she was 8 after suffering from extreme third-degree burns when hot water in a pot for mac-n-cheese scalded her left shoulder and upper back. She underwent several burn graft surgeries and stayed in the hospital for almost a month after the accident. She said the personalized care she received while she was a patient is what inspired her to become a nurse.

“The care at Shriners Children’s Boston was so drastically different from any other care I received as a child,” said Olivia. “As soon as we walked in the hospital doors it was clear that this is what they do, what they are experts in. It was incredible to see the way everyone worked together, the nurses, the occupational and physical therapists, the surgeons and the physicians. I think about my nurses I had at Shriners Children’s all the time and how they were able to advocate for my needs for me and my family. The care the staff at the hospital provided me to make me feel OK during a really scary time is really what influenced me to be where I am today.”

Olivia graduated in 2023 with a degree in nursing from Fairfield University in Connecticut. Today, she’s a nurse at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center on a General Medicine floor. She credits Shriners Children’s with turning a devastating burn injury into an opportunity to see a career field she never thought of before.

“I think of how personalized my care was for me at Shriners Children’s, I try to do that for my patients in the hospital and pay attention to their needs,” said Olivia. “When I was a patient, getting an IV was really tough for me. Today, I remember that with each IV my patient gets. I’m by the patient’s side, holding their hand, comforting them if they need it. I hope I’m making their day a little better like my nurses did for me. I’d like to say thank you to the nurses that I had, I wouldn't be where I am without them. Nurses truly make the world go round and the ones surrounding me help me learn and inspire me every day.”

Olivia said she is looking forward to advancing her career in nursing. She said she could see herself working in pediatric or reconstructive/plastics burn care as she gains more experience.

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