American National University

Graduate on Track to Become Nurse Practitioner

Kayla Tuers enrolled in the nursing program at the Pikeville Campus right out of high school, and today she is continuing her education working toward her master’s degree in the nurse practitioner program at Chamberlain College of Nursing. 

Considering her passion for the nursing field and her ambition, it’s not surprising that Kayla, at the age of twenty-four, has advanced so far in her career in such a short time. However, she feels that there’s another secret to her success: Pikeville Campus nurse administrator Shirley Goff, who prepared her to enter the field as an RN, and who continues to support her today, serving as Kayla’s preceptor during her practicum at East Kentucky After Hours Clinic, where Shirley works as a nurse practitioner.

“Had I not been here and met the people that I met here, I don't know that I could have succeeded as well as I have.”

“I started right after my 18th birthday and went right into the nursing program [at ANU],” Kayla recalled. “I never attended a college course before I walked in this building. Had I not been here and met the people that I met here—people like Shirley—I don’t know that I could have succeeded as well as I have.  She’s a tough instructor.  She makes sure you know your stuff.”

Kayla graduated from ANU in 2011, and worked in med-surg and in labor and delivery at Pikeville Medical Center before moving to Lexington where she was hired by The Women’s Hospital at Saint Joseph East. 

She earned her bachelor’s degree in nursing through Chamberlain, and is now funding her nurse practitioner program through the Health Resources and Services Administration’s (HRSA) Nurse Corps Scholarship Program, a program of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, which covers her educational expenses and provides a monthly living stipend in exchange for her commitment to work in an underserved medical area after graduating. 

Kayla is driving two and a half hours, three days a week to complete her practicum with Shirley. “But it’s worth it,” she explained. “I’m glad that I came here [to ANU] to school, and I’m glad that I have people in my life like Shirley.  Shirley is obviously somebody that is so dedicated that she will be with her students life-long. I feel like I [will be able to] call her in ten years and she would [be there with] whatever I needed.” 

A- Pikeville Campus graduate Kayla Tuers credits nurse administrator Shirley Goff with helping her succeed in her nursing education.

B- Kayla, who is working toward her master’s degree to become a nurse practitioner, assisted with school physicals during the Pikeville Campus’s Healthy Fun Fair.

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