AU allows me to advance my nursing skills from my rural farm
Transforming Lives: Learners of AU is an ongoing series where real students and alumni share how AU’s flexible online learning model made a difference in their lives and communities. Submit your story.
My name is Karlie and I am enrolled in Athabasca University’s Post-LPN Bachelor of Nursing program.
I became a licensed practical nurse in 2016 after graduating from Medicine Hat College. I love my job in nursing, as I love human interaction and working in health care is fulfilling. I currently work in rural Saskatchewan and have wanted to become a registered nurse (RN) to open up more job opportunities and further my education.
“I currently work in rural Saskatchewan and have wanted to become a registered nurse to open up more job opportunities and further my education.”– Karlie Strand, LPN to Bachelor of Nursing student
Balancing studies, family, farm life
After having my first child in 2018, going back to university in person was not an option. The closest brick-and-mortar university is 2 hours away from my small town of about 40 people. My spouse is a grain and cattle farmer, as well as an instrumentation technician in the oilfield, so moving was not an option for me to go back to school.
In 2021, I decided to try online learning through Athabasca University. At first, I found the transition quite challenging but as I’ve moved through the program, I learned to not only study independently but to enjoy the freedom of learning at my own pace.
“I learned to not only study independently but to enjoy the freedom of learning at my own pace.”
Love of self-paced online learning
I love that learning online allows me to keep my job as an LPN and spend as much time with my kids at home. I usually try to spend a few hours per day on my school work. Some days it is challenging to find the time, but with a very supportive spouse I am able to manage my school life.
Life is definitely busy with my schooling, work, and raising 2 kids but I am so thankful that I am able to do it all here at home.
For anyone contemplating Athabasca University to further your education, I recommend going for it for the ease of learning at your own pace. It is a lot of work, but with each class I feel such a relief of being one step closer to my goal.
Transforming Lives: Learners of AU
Read more profiles of AU students and grads in our series Transforming Lives: Learners of AU.