For Seattle Registered Nurse (RN) Marianne Unite, education was pivotal to pursuing her passion and for finding employment. Unite obtained a double degree from the University of Washington (UW) majoring in both nursing and biology.
“Nursing is very scientific,” Unite explained. “While I was in nursing school, biology and nursing courses both helped me get my foot in the door.”
In the competitive Seattle job market, Unite’s education paved the road to her success.
“It’s challenging to find a position in the Seattle area. There are four BSN [Bachelor of Science in Nursing] programs in the Seattle area. I was able to work in the nursing field because my school went beyond the academic coursework and helped me get involved in the community.”
The University of Washington provided interdisciplinary mentorship for Unite.
“I was really interested in nursing research for geriatrics. I spoke with someone who had their own research history in geriatrics and she mentored me for an entire year,” Unite stated. “I was specifically interested in providing care for the geriatric population. The UW online medical assistant programs offer additional coursework in geriatrics. Students from the school of medicine also attended these lectures. I really received a collaborative nursing education.”
As a nursing student, Unite participated in a diversity awareness group.
“We run a week-long camp for underprivileged high school students to help them get into college and learn about the nursing field,” Unite explained. “It’s free for them. We target students who typically don’t have access to resources like this.”
Unite credits her employment success to the UW school of nursing’s continued support. She has worked as a nursing technician at Seattle’s Harborview Hospital since August of 2012 and will begin a new role this summer.
“Harborview is a teaching hospital and there’s a culture of teaching, collaboration and teamwork. It’s a safe environment to ask questions,” Unite stated.
Unite will continue to pursue educational opportunities as an RN. She is currently working with a PhD student on a research project.
“Every year at Harborview, you need to attend continuing education to ensure you’re up to date on current research and policies to provide effective care,” she explained.
Unite highly recommends pursuing a four-year degree for employment success.
“I chose UW because of the emphasis that it has on leadership, community involvement continuing education. As a student, you have to put yourself out there, and UW is willing to guide and mentor you.”
Tracy Campion is a freelance writer covering all things Seattle. Her work can be found on Examiner.com.