Wearing G.O.W.N.S.

Wearing G.O.W.N.S.

A personal story of growth translated into a congratulatory message to the ABSN Fall Class of 2014!

by Mrs. Taiwo “tia” Ajao BSN, MPH20141216_DrAW_155850_0DRA8155 copy

“It all began on a late morning at a doctor’s office. Now I was not the LPN, Medical Assistant, phlebotomist or even the Receptionist; I was the patient. Usually I would have been complaining about the temperature or the long wait time by now, but on this day, I was deep in thought.

tia pt

You see, I was dreaming about the impossible. Could I possibly go back to school and become a Registered Nurse? I dreamt on”:

 “I could really change our story with a career in nursing”
 “Our boys would be just 3 and 5. Maybe I should try–they would hardly remember!”
 “I can actually help create true financial stability for our family. Oh the possibilities…”

“A flame was ignited in my heart that day and I applied to just one BSN Program: The Johns Hopkins University School of Nursing–the only program that had a Student Doula opportunity called Birth Companions. Many tried to discourage me; I mean, it did sound ludicrous for a poor, stay-at-home mom dealing with chronic illness to apply to the area’s most Elite Nursing School. How would she make it? And how would she pay for it? I asked the same questions as I watched a miracle happen. I was awarded THE HRSA Nurse Corps Scholarship, a full tuition award that put the wind beneath my wings. So today, I advocate for the underserved who are just as I was.

Yes, I have gone from wearing a PATIENT GOWN to donning this gorgeous BSN DEGREE COMPLETION GOWN.

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So I would like for us to remember all that we have accomplished through this program using the acronym G.O.W.N.S.

G is for Gratitude
• We are ARRAYED by the support of new mentors, professional colleagues, and friends. We started with few opportunities but leave with so many more!
• With gratitude we reflect on the good times and the rough times that have transformed us into future nurses in just 17 months!

O is for Ownership
• We have learned to be our own Advocates and to take the responsibility for our own well-being. Now, we CLOTHE others with the same enablement.
• We have taken ownership for our learning experience, choosing not to give up but to go through the challenges, and today we stand victorious!

W is for the Winners that we have become!
• We have overcome several challenges and made it to the end of a very challenging program!
• We are now amongst an elite set of Hopkins Graduates. A Strong Reputation paves the way before us as we continue to bring pride to the Hopkins’ Legacy.

N is for our NEW Nursing Careers!
• We have been ROBED with a degree that opens significant doors to possibilities!
• We are entering a profession of trust, of dedication, of service, and of passion.


S is for The Culture of Safety that we have all developed
• We protect the safety of our patients with heroic valor and thus, we are going to ace the NCLEX-RN Exam hands down!
• As we transition into professional practice, we are ready to make patient safety our #1 priority. Isolation GOWN anyone?

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So today, just a few days before my Big Boy’s 5th birthday, I salute all of my amazing colleagues for your tremendous accomplishments and the realization of your dreams. Congratulations!

With Gratitude,

-tia (BSN)


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