August Phoenix Graduates to Include First Married Couple
August Phoenix Graduates to Include First Married Couple

Among the 48 students expected to graduate from Creighton’s Phoenix-based accelerated nursing program in August are the program’s first married couple.

Jake and Sakura Marshall decided a few years ago to both apply to Creighton’s Phoenix program, and were accepted to be part of the program’s second cohort. Now, the couple from northern Utah are finishing their education in the 12-month program together.

After Jake spent six years as an explosive ordinance disposal technician in the Navy, he and his wife decided to embark on their next chapter together. Jake was the first to consider nursing as his post-military career, and Sakura followed soon after.

“I spent six years in the military, and toward years four and five, I wanted to move on and do something different,” Jake says. “I wanted to help people, so I started looking at health care options and decided on nursing. I really like that getting a BSN can be a lifelong career, or you can go teach, or go get a doctorate.”

“I was in a place where I liked what I did but kind of wanted something more, and I didn’t really know what that would be,” Sakura says. “When he started thinking about nursing, I started thinking about it more. I liked the idea of being able to help people and have a good career.”

The couple picked Creighton’s Phoenix-based program because they wanted to be in the western United States and liked the option of completing the program in a year. When they got in at the same time, “it made the decision really easy,” Jake says.

Taking their courses at the same time has had its advantages, they both say.

“We both have our strengths and weaknesses in certain areas, so we are able to support each other,” Sakura says. “We also know what we’re going through — it’s hard for people sometimes to come home and explain their day, and there’s no way for the other person to know what it’s like. Now we know what each other’s experience is like, and I think it’s been a really great advantage.”

Creighton University began offering its Accelerated Bachelor of Science in Nursing Program in Phoenix in January 2018, and celebrated its first graduating class in December 2018. Enrollment in the program continues to remain strong, as the third cohort, which began in January 2019, also has 48 students.

“We are extremely pleased with the growth and progression of the Accelerated Nursing Program here in Phoenix and are excited about its future,” says Jacqueline Chadwick, MD, the inaugural vice provost for the Creighton University Health Sciences Phoenix Regional Campus. “This is an example of the significant need for health care professionals in Arizona and the opportunity that exists for individuals as part of the Creighton approach to nursing education.”

Article written by Tom Evans and published in the College of Nursing Progress Report 2018-2019