Name: Annie Hammerquist
Hometown: Fruitland, Idaho
Q: How would you describe your experience at George Fox?
A: When I reflect back over the last four years at George Fox University, there are three main ideas that come to my mind. First, I truly believe I received an incredible education during my time here. I had professors who challenged me, believed in me, pushed me, and ultimately worked to facilitate my development into a competent, compassionate, professional nurse. I also developed many genuine relationships with friends as well as faculty during the last four years here at Fox. I could never imagined having the opportunity to get to know so many genuinely wonderful people who walked alongside me when times where rough, made my laugh when I was down, and yet all the while remained completely honest with me. I know that no matter what happens after graduation those people will always be there to support and help me wherever life takes me. Finally, I will always appreciate the opportunity I had to learn and grow in a Christ-centered environment. To be in nursing classes having those tough conversations about death, or marveling at the beauty of God’s creation of a newborn baby, it always came back to what an amazing God and Creator we have. To professors who prayed before exams or honest conversations with friends about how to deal with difficult ethical issues as Christians, I am entirely grateful for the opportunity to have spent the last four years of life in a such a quality environment!
I will probably remember most those times spent with friends cramming before pathophysiology exams until midnight, taking goofy pictures in the library when we were supposed to have been studying, singing at the top of our lungs with a friend as we walked across the quad at 1 a.m., getting deep with my best friends during Bible studies, laughing until I almost passed out with my roommate, and walking on the beaches of Normandy with friends on Juniors Abroad.
When I dwell on those who made an impact on my life, I must first mention my grandparents because they have always strived to instill in me a solid work ethic and living a Christ-filled life. My grandparents role-modeled these strong ideals, which carried over into my college experience. In fact, when I graduated on May 4, it was the 60th anniversary of my grandfather graduating from George Fox University! Two individuals from my time at Fox who greatly impacted my life would be my anatomy and physiology professor, Dwight Kimberly, and my work-study boss, Nate McIntyre. Dwight has this amazing passion for people and for learning! He not only believed in me as a freshman nursing student, but his advice and encouragement kept me going throughout my entire nursing experience. I learned from him that a passion for the Lord, people and learning will get you anywhere in life. My boss Nate has shown me what it looks like to be a kind and upbeat person every single day of the year. He has also shown me what it looks like to be a faithful leader who truly cares about every person’s story, and who works to uplift those around him and those who work for him, all the while showing a Christ-like attitude. I am so grateful for these amazing people in my life that taught me how to work hard, love people and strive to live a Christ-centered life.
Q: How have you changed or grown since coming to George Fox?
A: There was a turning point during the spring semester of my sophomore year when it dawned on me what an amazing opportunity I had to learn about our incredible human bodies! The previous three semesters of nursing school had been difficult, and I truly never had time to stop and think about what I was learning, but it was this moment when I began to realize how much I truly enjoyed learning the material! I enjoyed opening my huge textbooks and poring over how the human body works. I believe it was this moment that also changed my relationship with Christ. Every time I learned a new disease process, treatment option, or simply how a function of the human body works I became once again completely overwhelmed and amazed at the hand of God! I feel that every time I study the human body and its intricacies, my understanding of our all-knowing, all-powerful creator God grows! It is possible to see his handiwork in every single part of the human body! That moment in my dorm room in Coffin Hall instilled in me a love for lifelong learning, a humility for the opportunity to work in a field that displays the power of God, and a desire to live every day worthy of my Creator, worthy to be called a daughter of God!
Q: What's next?
A: My various clinical experiences have truly given me the opportunity to narrow down a nursing field that I would enjoy working in. Several areas I have a passion to work in are mental health, geriatrics and maternity nursing. However, my initial plan after graduation is to get a job that lends itself to the continued growth and development of my nursing skills, teamwork, delegation abilities and further progression as a professional registered nurse. I have always had a passion for nutrition and helping people develop healthy lifestyles, and I would love to see combining both my passion for nutrition and my passion for nursing to truly help people in a holistic way. Ultimately, throughout my nursing career, my goal is to always be an instrument of hope, guiding my patients to holistic healing. Whether as a mental health nurse, a delivery room nurse, or my dream job of helping people with nutrition, my goal is to be the nurse who offers the best medical care and shows through everything I do the love of the ultimate healer, Jesus Christ.