Nursing a big sense of relief
By RENEE REDMOND
THE best way Lismore father of two Shaen Springall could describe how he felt about graduating from the School of Nursing was 'relieved'.
Now a registered nurse at the Lismore Base Hospital, the 37year-old Southern Cross University graduate said he was finally doing what he had wanted to do since childhood.
"It's been a tough three years. My son was born one year into the degree and I've got a fiveyear-old daughter too," he said.
On Saturday Shaen was also awarded the High Achiever Award from the Royal College of Nursing, Australia, for his outstanding academic results.
"I left school at the end of year 10 and I've worked as a truck driver, hardware salesman, a cleaner and eventually a wardsman at St Vincent's Hospital before getting a chance to go to uni," he said.
Shaen embarked on a 16-week assistant-in-nursing course at St Vincent's Hospital and after that was able to apply for a place at Southern Cross University.
"Being older I think I was more dedicated. I didn't come to uni to have a good time. My family was relying on me to get through," he said.
For the first year of his studies Shaen worked full-time at St Vincent's Hospital, but for the second and third years he cut back to 16 hours a week.
"It's been worth it because I'm doing something I've always wanted to do, and I can support my family too," he said.