Nursing is in Their Blood

Peter and Jenna Gustafson
Registered Nurse, Loyola Hospital, Chicago
Registered Nurse, Carle Hospital, Labor and Delivery

For mother of four Pam Gustafson, receiving scholarships from the Christie Foundation have helped two of her children realize their dreams of nursing careers.

Pam’s only son, Peter, graduated from the University of Illinois after completing a four-year degree in Nursing. Today he is a Registered Nurse at Loyola Hospital in Chicago in Critical Care.

Her daughter, Jenna, is finishing her last semester in nursing at Lakeview College’s Eastern Campus in Charleston. She graduated in December 2011 and is preparing for her NClex exam. She has accepted a position at Carle Hospital in Labor and Delivery.

Jenna actually went back to school for nursing. She has a four year degree in Community Health from the University of Illinois. After graduating and working for a year, she decided to pursue nursing, her real passion. 

During high school both Peter and Jenna job shadowed in different areas of health care, which led them to nursing.

Pam isn’t surprised by their choices, “Peter and Jenna are both very caring people, very interested in helping others. Nursing is a natural choice for them.”

Pam is a seven-year Christie Clinic employee, serving as Office Coordinator at Christie’s Sleep Lab in Champaign. Her husband, Greg Gustafson, is a Civil Engineer.

The family is very active, all running, biking, and working out on a regular basis, and have all participated in the Illinois Marathon on some level. They are all also active in giving back, participating in various community and fundraising events.

While in school, both kids found it very challenging to balance the demanding schedule of work, college classes, activities, and volunteering, and clinicals.

Scholarships from the Christie Foundation helped offset Peters and Jenna’s tuition expenses, easing their financial burden.

“We are just so very thankful for what the Christie Foundation has provided to our family,” says Pam. “I’m so proud of my kids and my family. They all work so hard and are always willing to help others.”