Building myself towards a “culture of public health”

In a “former life” as an emergency preparedness specialist with the Red Cross, part of my job was to educate community members on everyday practices that can support their preparedness for disasters. A suggestion I often cited was, in order to make the task of building a “bug out bag” (emergency items to help you survive) and the magnitude of facing disasters less daunting, creating a “culture of preparedness” is crucial. A few examples for … Read More

Passionate about nursing

I was honored to participate in the OHSU School of Nursing video.  I am passionate and committed to the nursing profession and I am overjoyed to be a part of the one of the best nursing programs in the country.  OHSU offers a strong didactic and clinical education, and I feel prepared and excited to enter the nursing field.  I have loved working with such a diverse and experienced group of colleagues, faculty and precepting … Read More

My Day Through the Lens of Public Health

Unless your workplace is having a snow day or you brought an incredible lunch to look forward to – Mondays tend to be a bit of a bummer. As we all push through the daily grind – I try to revitalize my afternoon with a reminder of how often public health touches our lives each and every day… (Adopted from   6:30 am BUZZ. Wake up and brush my teeth, take a shower and … Read More

I survived ACLS

“Your patient is a 58 year old male presenting with chest pain 8/10, pulse is 190, BP 80/70 and respirations 20,” the instructor said. “Suddenly he snorts and collapses; you see this rhythm. What do you want to do?” I swallowed and looked down at the greyish plastic face of the mannequin and watched as little black lines squiggled their way across the EKG monitor with an impending sense of doom. Somebody call a code, … Read More

Doing one thing well

As we struggle to finish up our Fall quarter I am sure it leaves many of us feeling that we didn’t do anything well today, this week, or this quarter. We forgot to go back and see a patient, we didn’t call a friend back, we missed an deadline. Why is this? For me it is that I fall into the trap of trying to do too many things simultaneously, I over commit, I make … Read More

Conference season cool down

Imagine a student’s brain as a goldfish (not a very complimentary metaphor). Next, imagine the (although obviously false) claim that a goldfish can expand concordant to the environment it’s placed in. That is precisely how I felt upon my return from the Oregon Public Health Association and American Public Health Association annual conferences earlier this year. My gratitude for the privilege of graduate school education, as well as the financial ability to travel (and the … Read More

Stay classy San Diego!

Last weekend, I was granted the privilege to attend the National Student Nurses Association (NSNA) Mid Year Convention in San Diego, California.  What an incredible experience.  This was the 30th annual that NSNA has put on a “Mid Year” convention, similar to our (first time) OSNA Mid Year convention that we had in October. This year’s convention’s theme was titled “On the Horizon: You Future in Nursing”.  Let me be the first to tell you, … Read More

How firm is your handshake?

My grandfather always told me “never trust a man with a floppy handshake.”  This was said by a 6’5, 250 pound first generation German farmer. I took everything he said as golden truth, if grandpa said it, it was true.  I think he earned some respect in the community with his way of looking at life, evidenced by over 1, 000 people attending his wake.  He had other isms, but the handshake” grandpaism” sticks to … Read More

Motivation and the MPH

As an eighth grade student, I picked up the novel “Mountains Beyond Mountains” in preparation for a high school course. The novel, which chronicles the creation of international aid organization Partners In Health, inspired me deeply. It gave great examples of community-based solutions to global health disparities. While discussing the notion of health as a civil right, my middle school instructor challenged students to view this novel through the lens of the United Nations and … Read More

Lessons from Charlotte

One of my favorite stories is EB White‘s Charlotte’s Web. I found myself reading it again recently and even though I know how it ends, I find myself crying every time. By the standards of nursing school, I realize Charlotte’s Web is not tough academic stuff. In that moment, however, my brain enjoyed a break from the rice cakes of professional literature to savor the mind candy of a good book. Charlotte’s Web isn’t really … Read More



Ever wondered what life is like as a student at OHSU? What does it take to become a researcher? Just how gross is gross anatomy? Welcome to the blog that answers these – and many other – questions. It’s students writing first-hand about their commitment to careers in science and health care. It’s honest about the challenges as well as the joys. It’s not always pretty. But it is our story. Thank you for sharing it with us. And please, let us know what you think.

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