Six months into Creighton’s yearlong accelerated Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree program, Rachel Whipple is not only gaining the skills, confidence and knowledge to be a practice-ready nurse, she is also combating a deadly virus.
And making a major difference in people’s lives.
“A lot of people are in here getting their shots so they can see their new grandbabies or go travel,” said Whipple, during a break between patients at the COVID-19 community vaccine clinic at Creighton. “It’s really uplifting.”
“They get this sense of freedom now that they have the vaccine.”
Whipple was one of more than 200 Creighton health sciences students volunteering at the Feb. 27 clinic in Creighton’s Rasmussen Center, preparing and administering vaccine, answering questions, assisting in the patient recovery area, and performing other duties. Another 123 nonclinical volunteers from Creighton – students, faculty and staff – were on hand to assist the more than 3,600 guests that day as well.
The clinic has given Whipple, and other health sciences students like her, an opportunity to sharpen their skills and interact with patients, under the guidance of faculty mentors.
“It definitely helps us with our clinical skills,” Whipple said. “But it also helps us with our communication skills and getting that patient interaction that has been difficult to get with COVID, because we’re not always in a clinical setting.”
Whipple expects to graduate with her nursing degree in August. After that, she plans to return home to Colorado, where she hopes to begin a career as a neonatal intensive care or emergency room nurse.