UBC Reports | Vol. 49 | No. 5 | May
Single Mom Succeeds with Her Sons Love and Support
His medical condition led her into Nursing.
By Michelle Cook
Tackling tough assignments can be a lot easier if youve
got a study buddy. For Nursing student and single mom Tamsin
Morgana, that buddy was her 8-year-old son Alec.
We did our homework together, Morgana says. He
would give me advice when I was having a tough time and he
knew I was overwhelmed. And hed draw me pictures.
Alecs support means a lot to Morgana, 40, because if
it werent for him, she might not have left a successful
career in sales and marketing to go back to school.
Alec was born with a congenital heart defect and has survived
two-open heart surgeries. Today, he is a healthy, active tennis
and violin player and a budding artist who produced artwork
to encourage many of Morganas fellow students. Although
Morganas parents are both health professionals (her
mother is a nurse and her father, Ted Allen, is a UBC Clinical
Professor of Medicine Emeritus), it was her experience dealing
with her sons medical condition that opened her eyes
to the vocation of nursing.
I saw it as more meaningful, quality work where youre
helping people and giving back to the community, Morgana
says. Everyone said I was crazy, and I saw there were
problems in nursing, but it didnt scare me.
What also attracted her to nursing was the possibility of
more stability than what the local marketing industry offered,
and more flexible work hours that would allow her to spend
more time with her son. The two-year multiple-entry nursing
program offered by the Faculty of Applied Science also gave
her a chance to expand her skills.
Morgana says returning to school as a mom and mature student
was an intimidating and often nerve-wracking adventure that
put her time-management skills to the ultimate test, but she
credits her family and son for helping her to make it through.
During her practicum, Morgana worked in community health
and found a niche where she could combine her new and old
career skills. The field focuses on prevention and promotion
campaigns and, after she graduates, Morgana hopes to continue
working as a children and youth community nurse visiting schools
and clinics throughout Vancouver to provide health care, information
and access to resources.
Community health nursing is about getting out there
and meeting people and helping them to meet their goals and
needs, Morgana says.
Shes also looking forward to having more free time
to play with her study buddy, Alec.