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Meet Amy Riddle, an Emerging Nurse of South University

by South University
September 28, 2015

For the last 20 years, Amy Riddle has worked as an RN, spending the last 10 of those years in Southwest Florida, providing home health care to homebound patients, often in underserved rural or low-income areas.

Amy believes her drive to provide much-needed care to these communities stems from her memories of growing up in a small town where the closest pediatrician was an hour away. “That’s the worst feeling to have to be in a car when you’re sick as a child,” she recalls. Today, this feeling still informs her work, she says, explaining, “I know the importance of having primary care available for families and children.”

While time passed and Amy continued to work and volunteer in underserved areas, she began to feel compelled to do more. “I’ve seen a lot of people who are very poor and who need healthcare but aren’t able to receive it,” she explains. “I think that’s really what triggered my interest to go back to school to be a Family Nurse Practitioner (FNP).”

Choosing South University

After researching a wide number of programs and schools, Amy decided to enroll in a master’s degree program at South University, Online Programs—the Master of Science in Nursing with a Specialization in Family Nurse Practitioner program—in November 2014.

“I liked the flexibility of it. I liked that there are no campus requirements for the online program and that I could focus on just one class at a time instead of five or six,” she explains, although noting that she was pleased about her choice to double up on classes for a period so that she could move through the program in less time.

In her first year, Amy has already learned valuable skills that will help her with achieving her goals. “The first year of courses at South University has prepared me to focus on prevention of illness and promotion of health, rather than just treating disease,” she says, adding that she’s really enjoying the structure of the online classes.

“I didn’t expect that I would feel like I had learned so much, especially from writing all of these papers, but you really do. And when you have to discuss your classroom work with other students, that really makes a big difference in learning too,” she says.

Continuing Education and Career Development

Earlier in 2015, Amy was one of four students awarded the Emerging Nurses of South University Scholarship from The Education Foundation. “It’s a great honor. I was really, really excited,” she says. “In fact, I’m still excited.”

Following her anticipated graduation next year, Amy plans to take the American Nurses Credentialing Center certification exam and to continue serving the communities that need her most, both in a private practice setting and through house calls to homebound patients.

“I love to empower my patients and caregivers through teaching and education,” she says.

Her advice for others in the nursing field? “Don’t do what I did. Don’t wait 20 years. It’s good to get experience after you graduate from nursing school, but if you want to go back to school, just go for it. Work your schedule around it. Make it happen.”

Programs, credential levels, technology, and scheduling options vary by school and are subject to change. Not all online programs are available to residents of all U.S. states. Administrative office: South University, 709 Mall Boulevard, Savannah, GA 31406-4805 © 2015 South University. All rights reserved. Our email address is materialsreview@southuniversity.edu.

See suprograms.info for program duration, tuition, fees and other costs, median debt, salary data, alumni success, and other important info.

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South University Announces Emerging Nurses Scholarship Winners

by South University
September 24, 2015

In partnership with South University, Online Programs, The Education Foundation awarded four $1000 Emerging Nurses of South University student scholarships in 2015.

To apply, students submitted completed application forms, a faculty letter of recommendation, and a personal essay explaining how the scholarship would help them to progress within the nursing community. All applicants were required to be currently enrolled and active with at least a 3.2 GPA in a Nursing program at South University, Online Programs.

We are now proud to announce the scholarship recipients:

Thank you to all who applied – we are proud to have so many outstanding nurses at South University who are dedicated not just to their own growth but also to the growth of the nursing community.

In the coming weeks, we’ll be featuring the stories of these scholarship recipients on the blog, so be sure to check back regularly!

Programs, credential levels, technology, and scheduling options vary by school and are subject to change. Not all online programs are available to residents of all U.S. states. Administrative office: South University, 709 Mall Boulevard, Savannah, GA 31406-4805 © 2015 South University. All rights reserved. Our email address is materialsreview@southuniversity.edu.

See suprograms.info for program duration, tuition, fees and other costs, median debt, salary data, alumni success, and other important info.

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People Skills Needed to Succeed

by South University
September 16, 2015

There are many interpretations of what good people skills are and why they are useful. If you have the technical skills needed for your career, do you also need these soft skills to be successful? The short answer is yes, to be successful in any career, it is important to understand how to work well with others.

These skills apply to career and leadership success in almost all industries, regardless of the line of work. The skills necessary to be a leader such as understanding people and what makes them tick is of the utmost importance.

Developing People Skills

To develop good people skills, we first have to understand what they are. Here are four important skills to get you started:

  • Awareness – You are in tune with other's feelings and behaviors. You understand how to put yourself in someone else's shoes, and you practice this when necessary. Along these same lines, you're able to take your past experiences and use these to relate to what the other person is saying.
  • Communication - You speak with clarity and directness while paying attention to others non-verbal cues such as tone of voice, body language, and eye contact. You pay attention to what others say, how they say it, what they don't say and are in return flexible with your communication style.
  • Listening - You practice active listening and don't interrupt others before they are finished speaking. You listen to what other people are saying and aren't just waiting to speak.
  • Approachable –You treat your classmates and/or co-workers with respect, and in return they are comfortable coming to you with questions and problems that need to be solved. You keep an open mind, regardless of how you are personally feeling each day, and you keep your emotional intelligence in check.

Mastering People Skills

How do you obtain people skills if they don't naturally come to you? Once you understand what people skills are, it takes effort to implement them daily. Take time each day to be aware, communicate, listen, and be approachable to your co-workers. Put it on your to-do list next to the deadlines you need to meet.

Some careers require more interaction with people than others. It’s important to understand the level of skill needed for success in your current or desired career. There are many careers in which you’ll need to develop these soft skills, especially if you’ll interact with many people on a daily basis. Those studying Public Relations or Business should be just as aware of these soft skills as a nurse is of Anatomy and Physiology.

To learn more about developing your people skills, try taking a class on communications such as South University's COM2006 – Interpersonal Communication. You can also research free tutorials through YouTube or Lynda.com, or even read a book in improving your interpersonal skills. Whichever route of learning you choose, practice developing your skills daily until they become a natural part of your interactions with those around you.

Programs, credential levels, technology, and scheduling options vary by school and are subject to change. Not all online programs are available to residents of all U.S. states. Administrative office: South University, 709 Mall Boulevard, Savannah, GA 31406-4805 © 2015 South University. All rights reserved. Our email address is materialsreview@southuniversity.edu.

See suprograms.info for program duration, tuition, fees and other costs, median debt, salary data, alumni success, and other important info.

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