Hannah Turner, BSN '18, School of Nursing

Hannah Turner
"I will speak up when I see things that need to change, and be creative to find solutions to the problems that I see. "

I grew up just north of Edmonton, Alberta completing my BSc in biology and Spanish language at the University of Alberta in 2014. After completing my degree I worked as an admitting and bed management clerk before moving to Vancouver in 2016 to pursue my BSN at UBC. When listening to stories from the nurses in my family, as well as my own personal experiences early in the nursing program, I became aware of how important support is in the clinical setting for both new and experienced nurses. When approached to help out with the CRAB (Cognitive Rehearsal to Address Bullying in Nursing Education) project, I saw it as a perfect opportunity to help foster a supportive environment for nursing students, through communication techniques and dialogue about bullying in nursing. I look forward to continuing to collaborate with the CRAB project team in the future!

Why did you choose nursing?

For as long as I can remember I have wanted to work in health care. Initially I was thinking about entering medicine; however, a science degree, some travelling and a few life experiences later I came to the realization that what I was looking for out of my career was nursing. I am lucky to have spent my entire life hearing about nursing from my mother, aunts and cousins and have been continually inspired by their stories. When I started nursing school it felt like I was finally on the right track, and I haven’t looked back since. I am so honored to be standing beside them now as a fellow nurse.

What has made your time at UBC the most memorable?

My classmates were the most amazing part of this experience. A home away from home, they have been my family and my support network. We have shared food, stories and lanes at the pool. We’ve been there for each other during the sad days, the happy days, the long days of lectures, celebrating each other as we all grew up and experiencing so many huge firsts. I could not have asked for a more exceptional group of individuals to share this incredible and challenging journey with.

Where do you find your inspiration?

My inspiration comes from a variety of sources because if you have your eyes open many things can be inspiring. I see nurses doing amazing work on the units that I currently work on and I am so inspired to get better and learn more so that I can be more like them. My instructors are also an inspiration — they listen to student feedback to make informed changes, which shows that change is possible and that individuals really can make a difference. I am also inspired by my classmates who have an incredible amount of energy, and are already doing amazing work as they begin their careers.

What are your plans for the future?

Currently, my focus is on making the transition from student to working professional. I know that I will be continually learning and growing in this career, and that’s part of what makes it so exciting. Long-term, I would like to grow into more leadership heavy roles, particularly in the areas of infection prevention and control, pain management and continuing education opportunities available for nurses. There are so many areas that nurses can make an impact — I hope I can help make some positive changes.

How will you go on to make a difference in our world?

I will start by being the best nurse I can possibly be. I will strive to keep learning, and to improve my skills through practice, hard work and perseverance, because over time that will make all the difference. It’s going to be a combination of all the little moments: moments spent with the patient who is afraid; moments spent helping someone shower when they haven’t been out of bed for a week; and moments when I notice that my patient isn’t doing well and I know how to ensure their last day isn’t that day. I am going to show up and do my best. I will speak up when I see things that need to change, and be creative to find solutions to the problems that I see. I think Mahatma Gandhi said it best when he said, “You must be the change you want to see in the world.”