Moments of Pride: Kathy Baker (M.S.’94/N; Ph.D.’11/N)
In continuing our Moments of Pride series and our celebration of Nurses Week, the VCU School of Nursing is proud to highlight another alumna sharing why she loves nursing, how her education has prepared her for the current pandemic and more. Meet Kathy Baker (M.S.‘94/N; Ph.D.’11/N), associate chief nurse and associate vice president at the VCU Health System. Kathy is a graduate of both our master’s in nursing (nursing administration and leadership concentration) and our Ph.D. program. Last year she received our school’s Outstanding Nurse Service Award during Reunion Weekend.
Q. What do you enjoy most about being a nurse?
A. The part that I enjoy most about being a nurse is witnessing the small miracles that nurses perform every day. Nurses form the therapeutic relationships needed to provide care to patients and their families and they have the skills needed to help patients successfully navigate the demands that their changing health status creates. Watching nurses make a difference in the lives of patients and families is a true joy and privilege.
Q. How has your VCU School of Nursing education prepared you for your work as a nurse, particularly in situations such as the COVID-19 pandemic?
A. I am so proud of the education that I received at the VCU School Of Nursing. I received a solid foundation in Evidence Based Practice; Nursing Theory and Practice as well as Health Work Environments and Change Management. All of these skills have been essential in navigating the changing demands created by COVID-19. Because of my education at VCU, I felt prepared to help lead the effort to keep nurses and patients safe at VCU as we prepared to navigate the challenges of care of the COVID-19 patient population.
Q. Can you share any words of encouragement or advice to current and future nurses?
A. To anyone in the nursing professions, preparing to be a nurse or considering nursing as a career – you will get to be a hero to someone who will really need you! Hang in there – it is really worth it!