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Nursing Student Finds Her Path After Family Tragedy

Brittney DuBois
1st Year Nursing Student
University of Kansas at Lawrence

It took a tragedy to ignite a passion in Brittney DuBois.

When she was 13, her 19 year old brother Brett was in a terrible car accident that resulted in a one-month hospital stay. Four years later, complications from the accident brought him back to the hospital for a medically-induced coma, multiple surgeries, and a six-month hospital stay.

In her brother’s medical journey, Brittney found her calling. As her family sat with Brett, she watched as doctors came and went from his room, while nurses carefully tended to her brother’s needs – interacting with and caring for him day and night.

Brittney had always been interested in math, science, and medicine and dreamed of becoming a doctor. But the hands-on help – the constant patient interaction – she saw her brother’s nurses provide changed her path.

“I realized that nursing would give me more time with people – more opportunity to help them and interact with them,” she says. “That’s important to me. I’m a people-person, and I love to help others.”

Today, Brittney is on a four-year path to achieving her nursing dream. After graduation, she plans to work in a hospital setting, mentored by peers to help her adapt to a real-world patient-oriented setting.

Then she has her sights set on Africa, where she plans to do a six-month or longer stint with the Red Cross, Doctors Without Borders, or another organization serving the underprivileged.  

While she plans on remaining a life-long volunteer for such organizations, Brittney’s dream is to become a neonatal nurse practitioner, working in a large children’s hospital.

“The Christie Foundation scholarship program definitely helps, but more importantly, it inspires me,” says Brittney. “It’s great to see colleagues supporting the next generation of medical professionals. I want to make them proud.”