Student Spotlight: Arriane Morales
December 18, 2020
I get super emotional when I think I’m going to be a nurse soon because when you’ve wanted something for so long and you’re finally able to get a hold of it, it’s priceless. I have no words.
I started nursing back in the Philippines when I was 16 years old. I finished my first year of study and then became pregnant, becoming a teenage mom. This meant I had to take year off and then go back to school, but I couldn’t continue my nursing studies at that time.
My family and I then immigrated to Canada, and I wanted to continue my nursing studies, but because the Philippines is not a native English-speaking country, I had to take my International English Language test before they would even look at my credentials. Unfortunately, I failed the IEL test and it made me think maybe nursing was not for me; so, I went to study as a health care aide, and I’ve been working as a health care aide for 10 years.
Making the decision now to study nursing again, something I’ve wanted to do my whole life, was hard. When you’re making money and you have a routine, you think “maybe it’s not really for me”. I was a single mom for a long time, and then three years ago I got married, and my husband said I should try going back to school again. At the time, I was living in Winnipeg and Assiniboine’s’ Practical Nursing program had a waiting list. I told my husband that I couldn’t wait anymore; we wanted to grow our family.
I was browsing the Assiniboine website and saw that the Parkland Practical Nursing program was open. I chatted with my husband and thought maybe I should just try and apply. Now I’m over half way through the program. Every week, I drive the three hours from Winnipeg to live and study in Dauphin from Monday to Friday then drive back to Winnipeg for the weekend to be with my family.
It’s very hard living between two towns and being away from family. It’s just me who drives to Dauphin, and a part of me is always in Winnipeg. But every time I’m in Dauphin and school, I know this is the place I need to be; this is the place I’m going to be a nurse.
I have no regrets. All the driving, six hours every week, is totally worth it. At first, it was lonely because I didn’t know anybody; but during my first year, I developed great relationships with my classmates and instructors. The instructors are really passionate in helping you succeed. They love their job and do everything to help you. My classmates, we try to help each other; we came in as a group, and we’re going to graduate as a group.
The other thing is that my old classmates from the Philippians are in different parts of the world practicing nursing already, and it’s easier to compare to others rather than praise yourself for all the hard work you’ve done. But here I am, still fighting. The hard work, never quitting, no matter how many times I actually fail, I’m still here trying. If you want something, and that’s your dream, then you have to keep working on the dream.