Christian Long, Nursing Major
What does it mean to go beyond the ordinary? To go beyond the simple paths and search for something more. 2022 Cumberland University nursing graduate Christian Long shared what led him to the nursing profession and what it means to Earn A Degree Beyond Yourself. His sincere passion for helping others allowed him to discover a career he loves and a purpose beyond his time at CU.
“I have had a lot of experiences that have drawn me to the nursing profession. My mother was an LPN, a licensed practical nurse. I watched her work tirelessly to help others and provide for our family. It inspired me. I have had several occasions where I was able to help someone by administering first aid, which drew me closer to the idea of becoming a nurse. Ultimately, I realized I had a love for medical science, and I could align my passions with meaningful work as a nurse. I realized my work could be more than a job – it could be my career.”
As a nurse, you have a direct impact on someone’s life. “Having an impact on people’s lives is one of the best parts about nursing,” said Christian. “It really gives you that sense of fulfillment in your career. It makes it worth it at the end of the day – to see the smiles of the patients and families and hear them share how much you made a difference.”
As a nurse, you help save lives, and when you save someone’s life, it is not just one singular moment of need, but all the moments that come after that. A nurse’s impact goes beyond the moment of care. It offers hope for the future.
“As a nurse, you meet patients often in their most critical state, and sometimes it is hard to picture what their life outside of the hospital room looks like. It is important to remember it’s more than just a snapshot. You’re helping them get back to their lives. It’s everything,” said Christian.
As a nurse, you are part of something bigger than yourself. Your patients have jobs and people who love them. “Sometimes you can even see yourself in their situation,” said Christian. When you care for a patient and you hear their story, you begin to realize this could be someone in your family. It influences your care because you see your patient as that family member, and you want to do everything you can to try to help them recover faster.”
“When you view patient care from this perspective, you are seeing the patient as a person, not just a number. When you see them as a father, mother, son, or sister, you start to realize that you are part of a bigger picture. You are helping to put families back together.”
Cumberland University helps prepare nurses for these significant moments of impact. “CU was a great place to receive my nursing education. The university has a lot of great learning opportunities for the students. They offer several financial aid options, and their program came highly recommended. They offer a personalized education and have achieved high NCLEX pass rates every year,” said Christian.
Christian’s experience at CU allowed him to follow his dream of becoming a critical care nurse who gives back to his community. “Instead of just focusing on income potential and professional success, which are both important, there is something really special to have a sense of purpose that goes beyond yourself and impacts others,” said Christian. “Earning a degree beyond yourself means using what you have been equipped with here at Cumberland University for the betterment of the people around you.”