Health Journalist’s Story about Being Inspired by a Nurse (His Mom)!

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Linecons_graduation-cap.svgby Healthcare Journalist, Brett Jacobson

Any meeting, appointment or assembly held before noon should be illegal in my opinion, but when I was in high school I knew it wasn’t up to me and I was familiar enough with the word mandatory. So, at about 9:46 a.m. I and the rest of the graduating class were asked a question. “Where do you plan to go to college?” I sat in the sixth row back with my feet up, and I elbowed the boy beside me. “As if, right?” I said.

“Excuse me?” Mrs. Wulchak cut in. “Where do you plan on going Mr. Jacobson?” she asked, and I didn’t see anything wrong with my answer: “I don’t.” Nothing was said then, by I could tell that it had set off all kinds of alarms for her. That evening, I got home from practice to learn that she had called my mom. She asked that we sit down together and so we did.

College is an unnecessary expense in my life, I said, parroting the things I had heard other people say that all translate into the fact that I was scared. I was terrified to go to college and I was terrified to move away from home. I didn’t know what college meant for me, I didn’t know anything about college and instead of reaching out to learn – I just shut down from the fear. My mom wasn’t thrilled with what I was saying and I knew she wouldn’t be, but what she did next completely shocked me.

“I’ll go with you.”

Those simple words really got the gears turning in my head. Over the next few days, my mom got me to start tentatively looking at in state schools, and she started looking for an online college. There are many programs online for Registered Nurses to continue their education and go on to receive their Bachelor of Science in Nursing, and that is what she found. She selected California State University and the following fall, we both started school. I was lucky enough to be close to home while I was in college, and my mom was definitely keeping her word. She was the most dedicated I had ever seen as she would work 12 hour days, and then still find time for her coursework. She studied for her exams on her lunch breaks. She did everything she said she would do, and stuck with it to the very end.

My mom ended up completing her degree in just less than a year, and it has improved her career and my relationship with her outstandingly. My mom is now one of the head nurses at her hospital, and she is definitely a shining example of perseverance. You can do anything you set your mind to, and she has taught me that over and over again through the years – especially when she went back to school. I learned firsthand that Nelson Mandela was making a very important point when he said,  “Education is the most powerful weapon one can use to change the world” (

I went on to receive a journalism degree, and I was only a little bit homesick. College is an amazing experience, and so is nursing! My mom gets to touch so many lives every single day, and I’m incredibly proud of her dedication.

For anyone who is looking to continue their education while being an RN, there is a guide I published that has a list of schools and some details about each one, you can find called, “Online RN to BSN Directory!  For anyone who is wondering about getting the BSN, you can take it from my mom and my story – you don’t know how many lives you can truly change if you start with your own.

6a3f54_2194ddf3bc094390aafb679bd7cb8ca4Brett Jacobson is a 24-year-old healthcare journalist and writer from the Bay Area. He graduated from San Francisco State University, and has spent most of his career writing for  His mother is a nurse, which sparked his passion for healthcare from a very young age.

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