A Special Mother-Daughter Graduation Story: Together, They Achieve Nursing Success”
Graduation day is a long-awaited milestone for anyone who has completed their education. It’s a time when loved ones gather to celebrate the achievements of the graduate. However, for one mother-daughter duo, the joy of graduation was even more profound because they had accomplished it together.
At East Carolina University, a mother and daughter from the same family proudly graduated from the registered nurse program, marking a first for the institution.
“People often thought we were sisters,” shared Jessica Van Wagenen. “I would have to explain that I was the mom, and we were doing it together.”
Jessica, a former Marine who is now retired, had put her own aspirations on hold to raise her daughters. However, fate led her back to pursue her dreams, and her daughter, Keelin, followed suit.
“I always thought the girls needed some sort of stability because we were always picking up, moving, and with their dad kind of in and out all the time,” Jessica explained. “So, I decided to forgo my college and focus on giving the children as much stability as possible and stayed home with them.”
Keelin, Jessica’s daughter, expressed her pride in her mother for not giving up on her dreams. “I tell her every day that I’m proud of her and that she continued to do what she wanted to do,” the daughter said.
Both women have already begun their careers. Keelin works as a pediatric nurse at ECU Health, while Jessica is employed as an operating room nurse at Carteret Healthcare.
The memories of attending nursing school together will be cherished forever by both mother and daughter. “It’s pretty exciting. It’s really nice to be able to share that with my daughter. We will always have that together,” Jessica said with joy.
Keelin added proudly, “It feels cool. Some people went to school with their siblings, some with their significant others. I just get to say I went with my mom.”
This heartwarming tale reminds us never to give up on our goals. Share this uplifting story with others to spread happiness and inspire them to pursue their dreams.