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Employee Spotlight: Kari

Posted in: Employee Spotlight

Some people are born to be a nurse, for others it is a calling realized later in life. For registered ICU Nurse Kari, it’s a little bit of both. Her mother was a University of Michigan Health-West (UMH-West) Nurse and Kari has even worked alongside some of the same compassionate colleagues as her mom.

Prior to becoming a nurse, Kari was a UMH-West Clinical Secretary and Patient Care Tech.

“I was able to gain a lot of knowledge and skills in the medical profession during this time,” she said. “I felt supported by my co-workers and management. Eventually, I went back to school to pursue a degree in nursing.”

Kari advises people who are interested in the medical field to shadow the positions they find interesting.

“When I started working at UMH-West, I was in college pursuing my pre-medical degree,” she said. “After working as a Secretary and Patient Care Tech, I quickly realized that nursing was where my heart is.”

Kari loves the camaraderie between her colleagues at UMH-West. Some of her best friends are her fellow nurses.

“We genuinely care for each other,” she said. “When I’m having a difficult or busy day, I can always count on my co-workers to lend me a hand.”

After work, Kari enjoys spending time with her husband and three young children. Despite working 12-hour shifts, Kari is grateful to have a job that allows plenty of time to be with her family. As a loyal Michigan State University fan, this often includes cheering on the Spartans in basketball and football games.

Every summer, Kari and her family goes camping with a group of about 150 people at Ludington State Park, filling up almost the entire campground.

“I can give my work my entire focus when I’m there and I can give 100% to my kids when I’m home. It’s the best of both worlds,” she said.

Kari was recognized for her compassionate care, receiving The DAISY Award for Extraordinary Nurses. The DAISY Award recognizes nurses who provide skillful care to patients and families and reinforces the importance of compassion in health care.

“I work in a department where not all of my patients have the ability to remember the care that I provide them, so this award holds a special place in my heart,” Kari said.

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