My name is Corey Conner and I am a junior nursing student at the University of Maine. I am also a member of the University’s cross country and track and field teams. As a freshman student I came to the University with the ultimate goal of graduating with a degree in nursing while balancing being a 3 season athlete. So far this has been quite the challenge; I have learned that it takes a great deal of discipline to balance these two areas of my life so that neither is neglected in any way. Through my three years in the School of Nursing’s undergraduate program I have found myself learning and growing as a student and an individual, and I have also found myself gaining a profound respect for the profession and all that it involves. I understand how challenging it is for students to work their way through the program and adequately develop their nursing skills so that they can at the end of this process, take and pass the NCLEX exams and become a registered nurse. This program demands that students give their full attention to it; as both a nursing student and athlete I found myself able to equally divide my attention and efforts between both nursing and running. The faculty and staff of the university’s nursing program have been very accommodating to the hectic schedule that often accompanies a student-athlete’s demands. There have been many times when both traveling to meets and practice schedules have conflicted with my academics; yet maintaining good communication with my instructors has allowed me to find ways in which I can still accomplish both.
As an athlete, in particular a Division I college athlete, a disciplined mind-set is needed to train, to compete, and to succeed. I have also found that this particular characteristic is needed to progress through the undergraduate nursing program. Having this attitude towards my studies has helped me to remain focused in the program. I truly believe that being a strong-willed, determined individual will lead you to your goals in life; my goals are to be the best runner and the best nurse that I can be and the University of Maine has helped me to do that.
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