Naomi Ernst-Smith

Naomi is standing in front a group of medical cabinets. HCC Nursing student, Naomi Ernst-Smith is exchanging years of experience as a CNA for a career as a Registered Nurse.

When Naomi Ernst-Smith, HCC nursing student, moved to North Carolina she brought 13 years of CNA experience with her. She also practiced private duty for a few years. But the move made her realize this was the perfect time to transition from a Certified Nursing Assistant to a Registered Nurse.

Becoming a nurse will give me so many options,” Naomi explains. “But I want to gain a few years’ experience working in a hospital first.”

Naomi has two daughters and selected HCC because it is close to home. “The small school setting allows me to have a better relationship with the teachers. And the beautiful campus is a bonus. It lends a relaxing atmosphere to the learning environment.”

Naomi also acknowledges that coming back to school after being in the workforce for a while means she is more focused.

Naomi is the recipient of the Philanthropic Educational Organization International (P.E.O.) BV Chapter scholarship, the Robert Forga Nursing Scholarship, and the Golden Leaf Scholarship. “I am so grateful for the opportunity to come back to school,” Naomi explains. “It’s easier to attain your goal when you have someone who believes in you. It’s a motivating factor.”

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