A new start in a new country

Savanna Wyatt, Reporter

Being from a different culture helps me a lot when dealing with patients because I have a different point of view,” said Oriana Tamburlini, a senior nursing major.

The 21-year-old originally came to the United States from Venezuela in 2016. She came to pursue a degree in nursing to then become a registered nurse. For now, she balances school, her job and being a resident assistant.

“College was gonna be better for me here than back home,” said Tamburlini.

Raised in the town of Valencia, there were not a lot of options for her in terms of education. Studying healthcare was not an option for her at home, so she decided to come here to study instead.

When she arrived in America in August 2016 to start Park University, she noticed there were some differences between Venezuela and America. Tamburlini noticed that in Venezuela, being centered around family is more common than in the United States. While everything they do involves their family in some capacity, she did not notice the same here.

Here she noticed many teenagers were eager to leave their homes and families at any given chance. They enjoyed leaving their families to go spend time with their friends.  In Venezuela, it is more common to be around your family and even incorporate friends into the life of your family. In addition to these differences, there were also some challenges with the transition from Venezuela to America.

She learned English in school; however, it was still a challenge to speak it constantly. She also found coming to a place where she did not know anyone difficult. She came here by herself, and the only person she knew was her older brother, Licio, who moved to America years prior. Nevertheless, she was determined to continue her education and become a nurse.

She always had an admiration for healthcare, however, studying pre-medicine was fairly expensive. Because of this, she decided to choose nursing as she could combine her love of medicine and her desire to help patients.

Her dream career would be to become a travel nurse. This would allow her to help people that do not have healthcare from different cultures and communities. For now, she works at the University of Kansas Health System hospital in Kansas City, Kansas, as a nurse’s assistant. Her overall responsibility is to help the nurses as they provide her with tasks such as patient transfers, taking vital signs, checking blood sugar levels and more.

“I get to learn from nurses because I work with them and can see what I will be doing in the future,” said Tamburlini. “I learn a lot.”

When she is not spending her days at the hospital, Tamburlini is also a resident assistant. She wanted a job on campus that would allow her to interact with many different people, and that is what being a resident assistant allows her to do.

She is able to be a role model for other students and be a guide to help them with whatever they need. From roommate disputes to giving advice, she is able to lend a hand and be there for her residents. It can be hard balancing being a resident assistant and a nursing student; these things can be tough to juggle.

Time is the biggest challenge she faces. She always puts her schoolwork and classes first to ensure she is properly learning and understanding the material. She schedules her shifts around important class days and times such as major tests. She also allots ample time for studying.

For her resident assistant work, she is fortunate that most of her tasks are unscheduled, so she can take the time for her duties at her own leisure. She is willing to work hard for these three aspects of her life and enjoys it. Working hard has always been something she is proud to do as that is what she wants and how she was raised.

“I don’t expect things to be easy, and I don’t mind doing extra stuff to get what I want,” she said.

She will continue to work hard toward finishing her degree in May 2021.