Becoming a DNP with a Full-Time Career… and an Injured Mom

Sydnee Logan
By Sydnee Logan  | 
Becoming a DNP with a Full-Time Career… and an Injured Mom

Last march Roberto Roman’s parents were involved in a very serious car crash. His dad survived the accident with barely a scratch but his mom suffered multiple near fatal injuries including a spinal fracture that could have left her paralyzed. At the time Roberto was a student in Johns Hopkins’ DNP Executive Track program, as well as a full time clinical nurse educator at Baptist Health in Miami, FL., but in an instant his focus changed. “I needed to make sure Mom survived and our family is good,” he says.

He took a month off of work through the Family and Medical Leave Act and stayed in touch with his advisors to reschedule his assignment due dates. “They were phenomenal and really worked with me. At the time I couldn’t focus on school work and cope with everything that was going on.” His classmates were also very supportive, “they checked on me, made sure I wasn’t falling behind, they provided feedback on my papers and acted as accountability partners for me.”

He used the experience to inform his DNP project, Improving the Knowledge Skills & Attitudes of Novice Nurses Towards Evidence-Based Practice, which is helping to make Baptist Health an even better, safer hospital system. Roberto’s been with the hospital for 15 years, working his way up from a clerk, to an associate’s-prepared nurse, all the way through to a DNP-prepared nurse. “Now my family’s story can help new nurses understand why evidence-based practice is so important.”

Roberto’s mother had her third back surgery in March, and is recovering incredibly. “The surgeons say they’ve seen people paralyzed for less. And she looks good, looking at her now you would never know what she’s been through,” he says. As for Roberto, he’s graduating on time this May.

Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) Executive Track

Roberto's class field trip
Roberto and his cohort going to Sibley Hospital.


Sydnee Logan is the Social Media and Digital Content Coordinator for Johns Hopkins School of Nursing. She shares what’s going on here with the world.

Stay Up-To-Date

Get updates on the latest stories, from hot topics, to faculty research, alumni profiles, and more.

Ways to subscribe