When April Malone did her first rotation while completing her academic requirements for nursing, she discovered that she enjoyed working in the labor and delivery department. She earned her Bachelor of Science in Nursing from the University of Texas at Tyler. Malone was a labor delivery nurse for 10 years.

(Photo Courtesy of April Malone)

(Photo Courtesy of April Malone)

“The fact that I could see life being brought into the world was great and I wanted to be a part of that,” said Malone.

She started her residency at Parkland Health and Hospital System in Dallas.

“Parkland is a teaching hospital so I felt I would get a lot of experience working there, and I did. I learned how to provide safe nursing care to a laboring patient. As a manager, I started to develop my leadership skills, which initiated my desire to further my education. During my time there, between 40 to 50 babies were being born every day; that is about 16,500 babies per year,” said Malone.

“I was a nurse leader and the hospital wanted their nurses to further their education. The hospital offered tuition reimbursement and I was ready to go back. I was hesitant at first because it had been a long time since I had been in school [10 years]. When I earned my bachelor’s, I didn’t have a family. Now, going back to school for my master’s, I was married with a four-year-old and a newborn. Balancing school with work and home was a challenge,” said Malone, who earned her Master’s of Science in Nursing Administration from the University of Texas at Arlington.

Malone is currently a nurse manager in Gynecology as part of Women’s Services (which deals with breast surgery, hysterectomy, cervical, breast and uterine cancers, plastic surgery and minimally invasive surgery) at Texas Health Presbyterian of Dallas.

“To further your education, it is one of the best things you can do. The field of nursing is constantly evolving. You have to further your education in order to stay abreast of the newest developments in technology.”

“Don’t be afraid to return to school. There are so many different avenues to furthering your education. You can get your education online and find options that work for you and your family,” said Malone.

Robin D. Everson is a native Chicagoan who resides in Dallas, Texas. Her appreciation for art, food, wine, people and places has helped her become a well-respected journalist. A life-long lover of education, Robin seeks to learn and enlighten others about culture. You can find her work at Examiner.com