Lisa Satterfield of Snow Hill was thrilled to have successfully completed the Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) Program at Lenoir Community College in May and earning the RN initials behind her name.
A nontraditional student, married, and a caregiver for her disabled husband, she was employed as a full-time Care Partner at Vidant Health while attending nursing school. She said things became challenging while in nursing school and she had to reduce her work hours to part-time to focus more on school and her studies. She managed to make her financial needs met by working every weekend and on holidays.
She endured a cluster of emotions while her husband had gotten severely ill and was admitted to the hospital. “My husband needed emergency surgery on the same day I was scheduled to take a nursing test,” Satterfield recalled. “My instructors worked with me and allowed me to make-up the test due to the critical state my husband was in.” She managed to complete her studies and pass the test during this strenuous time. She was determined to complete this program and achieve her goal of becoming a Registered Nurse (RN).
For 25 years, she worked as a Certified Medical Assistant and was looking for something that would offer more job security, better pay, and flexibility as she grew older. During the height of the Covid-19 pandemic, Satterfield witnessed first-hand the nursing shortages and decided to retire as a nurse.
She was eager to help fight this pandemic as a front-line medical worker and knew she could do more. This motivated her to stay on track with pursuing her nursing degree and gave her the courage to enroll in the ADN Program at age 50. She also enrolled in the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act Program and was assigned Career Advisor Ika Grant.
“School is very challenging at 50 and having a Career Advisor like Ika to listen to my challenges of a sick husband, a new grandbaby that I wasn’t able travel to see for months due to her school and work schedule, or how to juggle bills to make ends meet, made things less complicated,” she said.
“Ika was super supportive the whole time, and she helped provide the extra support, encouragement, and nursing study resources I needed,” she said. “WIOA has been a lifesaver for me, by paying for tuition, Kaplan Testing Fees, and the State Board Fees. Without the help of WIOA, I would have had to work extra shifts to cover the expenses for the nursing program when I needed that free time to study and prepare for nursing tests and the NCLEX.
Satterfield graduated from LCC’s ADN Program May 5 and passed her NCLEX State Boards on May 17. On June 6, she transitioned from a part-time Care Partner to a full-time RN with ECU Health Medical Center. She works on a general surgery floor taking care of patients with hip replacements, gall bladder surgery, gastric bypass, and kidney transplants.
“This program (WIOA) was such a blessing to me, and I highly recommend it to anyone. “I am very thankful for the WIOA Program.”