A former medical practice manager who graduated last April with a USC Bachelor of Nursing Science has been recognised for her outstanding performance in her first year on-the-job with the Sunshine Coast Hospital and Health Service (SCHHS).
Caloundra’s Carla Dreyer, 41, didn’t realise her employer was presenting a Graduate Nurse of the Year award until she was called up recently to receive it.
“I feel honoured to be chosen,” she said. “I worked hard during my first year as a graduate nurse, doing my best to learn as much as I could.
“After a placement at Nambour General Hospital during my degree, I worked at the nearby Glenbrook Residential Aged Care Facility as a graduate.
“Glenbrook provides a transitional rehabilitation program for the elderly, to help them either transition safely back home or gain an aged care placement. This role gave me the opportunity to extend my nursing skills and enhance my team leadership skills.”
Carla is also now celebrating her appointment to the emergency department at Nambour General Hospital with a rotation to Sunshine Coast University Hospital at Birtinya later this year.
“I’ve reached my goal of becoming an emergency nurse and I’m loving it. My role is to provide initial, primary and secondary assessment and care for patients and I’m learning alongside an amazing team of health professionals.
“Communication is a big part of the job, and it’s important to develop therapeutic relationships with patients and their families.”
Carla, a married mother of three current university students, said the support services and study flexibility offered at USC had helped her achieve her degree.
“I grew up in the little country town of Jerilderie, NSW, and left school in grade 10 to work on our family farm – but I always wanted to be a nurse,” she said.
“It was really competitive gaining a graduate position and I used the USC resume service and was shortlisted with Queensland Health. I was so nervous when I sat the medication calculation exam at the Sunshine Coast Health Institute.
“Now I would love to further develop my emergency medicine nursing.”
SCHHS Nurse Educator, Graduate Program, Claire Hallinan said Carla was nominated by senior nursing staff to receive the Graduate of the Year award from a cohort of 84 graduate registered nurses and midwives from universities across Queensland.
“The criteria for this nomination was that the graduate nurse demonstrated the ability to consistently excel in the role both clinically and professionally, demonstrate the ability to work and support their team, and achieve the graduate program expectations,” Ms Hallinan said.
“Carla’s hard work and passion for the job made her a standout nomination for the award.”
USC Senior Lecturer in Nursing Dr Marc Broadbent said Carla showed academic strength in her studies and applied herself well on clinical placement.