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Alumna Profile: Janette Keddy, Nursing

Sightings recently caught up with Janette B. Keddy, a 2012 graduate of our BSN program. Janette is currently a Community Health Nurse at the Visiting Nurse Association (VNA) of Boston.

What was your education and career history before coming to Simmons?
I had a Bachelor of Science in Finance and Economics from Syracuse University. I had a real passion for healthcare economics, but found myself in a financial analyst role after my graduation. Years later this led to various analyst positions and ultimately to a career in Information Technology. During this time, I also became a certified running coach through the Road Runners Club of America and a yoga instructor.

Why did you choose to become a Nurse?
After becoming a running coach and yoga teacher, I had an extreme interest in the human body. I also am very interested in people. My previous career wasn't allowing me to make the difference in the world that I had hoped to make. Now, working as a nurse, I feel I am able to make a difference in people's lives and that is a very satisfying feeling.

Why did you choose Simmons?
I was attracted to the program because of its incredible reputation. I also was attracted to the Dix program in particular because it was meant for adult students and I wanted to be part of a like-minded group with similar goals.

What was it like coming back to school?
A dream come true! I have always loved school and having the opportunity to go back for something I was truly passionate about was a blessing. My class at Simmons was a diverse group of ages and backgrounds and I think that made the transition to going back as an adult much easier.

What was it like to be an adult student at Simmons?
I felt respected as an adult student by the faculty and my classmates. While it was very hard work, I do believe the faculty and my classmates all worked together to help each other balance classroom, clinical and home life. I felt like Simmons was my home away from home

What advice do you have for an adult thinking about Simmons?
My biggest piece of advice would be to make sure you have a strong support system. Simmons faculty will offer great support, but adults will need help at home. I found myself just needing a night off from making dinner and sometimes that made all the difference in making sure I had time to do reading. Don't be afraid to ask for help! Making a career change or going back to school as an adult (or both!) is definitely scary, but change is good, albeit scary, and we all need change to grow.

How did you find your first nursing job?
Simmons College and the VNA of Boston had received a grant to start the first residency program for new nurses to start their careers in the community. I had the incredible opportunity to be a part of this residency program.

Has Simmons prepared you for this position?
Yes, it has, and then some! It's long been thought that new graduates need at least one year of acute care experience before entering the community as a visiting nurse. The group of new Simmons graduates who started at the VNA of Boston have been told several times how well-prepared we were with our assessment skills and clinical knowledge. I owe this to Simmons' amazing faculty and clinical experiences.

If reading about Janette's time at Simmons gets you excited about our second-degree Nursing options, apply now!