NDSU nursing students across the state are helping health care groups administer the COVID-19 vaccine to hundreds of people in North Dakota. For example, students at NDSU Nursing at Sanford Health in Bismarck assisted Sanford Health to deliver doses to 500 people in a single day in March.
“I will remember the people that came in and cried as they were getting the vaccines because they would not have to be afraid of COVID anymore,” said Shayla Heger, an upper-level nursing student from Bismarck, North Dakota. “I feel so honored to have been able to be a part of that experience with them.”
Heger said the practical experience in administering vaccines also enhances students’ nursing knowledge. “Giving COVID vaccines as a nursing student really broadened my communication skills. We were giving vaccines to people of all ages, with all different backgrounds,” said Heger.
“Part of being a land grant university is being able to help communities and the state,” said Charys Kunkel, director of NDSU Nursing at Sanford Health in Bismarck.
“Our students have often been involved in health fairs, career explorations and other community events such as the Downtowners Street Fair and the Band Day Parade,” continued Kunkel, “but being able to help people in our community with vaccinations that make a difference in their health is a privilege that also enhances nursing education for students.”
Nursing student Heger appreciates the opportunity to help her hometown. When she graduates in May, Heger plans to work at a Bismarck Hospital as a labor and delivery nurse. She also hopes to pursue advanced nursing education in the future.
Nursing student Lexus LaMotte said she learned the importance of vaccinating and heard other people’s personal stories about why they were getting vaccinated.
“What I will remember the most is the excitement the people felt once they got the vaccine. It was a little moment of hope for a better future,” said LaMotte. The Minot, North Dakota native plans to work in emergency medicine in Bismarck when she graduates.
The NDSU School of Nursing provides bachelor’s and graduate nursing education. It offers small class sizes and personal attention in this high-quality, nationally accredited program. To learn more about NDSU Nursing at Sanford Health, college transfer options, or to schedule a visit, call (701) 224-3800 or email NDSU.BisNursing@ndsu.edu.
As a student-focused, land grant university, we serve our citizens.