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Career Story: Nurse In A Teen Pregnancy And Parenting Program

Nurse In A Teen Pregnancy And Parenting Program

Job Title: Nurse

Type of Company: A school system in a suburb of Boston, Massachusetts.

Education: BA, Psychology, University of Pennsylvania •• BSN, Nursing, University of Pennsylvania •• Masters, Nursing, Women's Health Nurse Practitioner, University of Pennsylvania •• Post-Master's certificate, Family Nurse Practitioner, Drexel University

Previous Experience: I currently work as a nurse in a pregnant and parenting teen health program. Prior to this job, I worked in college health as a nurse practitioner at a trio of colleges in the Boston metropolitan area. I also work per diem on the postpartum unit at of a major regional hospital.

Job Tasks: My primary responsibility is to identify any pregnant or parenting students, provide them with access to school-wide and community based services and advocate on their behalf. The goal of our program is to assist pregnant or parenting students so that they will graduate from high school, attend secondary education or skill training and develop healthy parenting skills.

A typical day includes assisting pregnant students in navigating the health care system to find a doctor or midwife to provide prenatal care, accessing WIC and public services like food stamps or welfare, child care vouchers. We also try to connect young parents with parenting programs like Healthy Families. I also meet with pregnant students families and teachers to notify them of the students' pregnancies.

The other part of my job which I also really enjoy is helping to prevent teenage pregnancies by providing education to students in the classroom and one-on-one about making healthy and responsible choices around relationships and sexuality.

In my hospital job, I care for mothers and their new babies immediately after delivery until the time they go home. I assess their vital signs, checks them for signs of infection and counsel the mothers about caring for their newborns.

Best and Worst Parts of the Job: I love the flexibility of my job. I also love that every day is different and that I am able to provide assistance to young people.

The worst part of my job is that it never feels complete and there is always work to be done

Job Tips:
1. If you are interested in nursing, it is a good idea to work in hospitals or health care facilities while in high school or nursing school to get greater exposure to job opportunities.

2. Speak to as many people in the health care field before choosing an educational direction so that you keep your options open for many career choices.

3. The early years as a nurse often are difficult because of the off-shift work but stick with it because the flexibility and financial rewards of being a nurse are great.

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