When Reine Mouity-ngyo was growing up in the Congo, Central Africa, she always wanted to become a doctor. But her country was at war, and Reine came to the United States as a refugee by way of New York along with her mother, sister and brother. “It was a big change, and took me about a year to learn English,” says Reine, who attended a refugee school and took English-as-a-second-language classes at her local library.
Nudged toward nursing
Several years later, after acclimating and learning English, Reine earned a bachelor’s degree in biology at Syracuse University. But she struggled on the medical school entrance exam and decided on the advice of her sister to go to nursing school instead. She started working as a patient care assistant at Albany Medical Center to make sure she enjoyed the work and enrolled in the Registered Nurse program at Maria College in Albany. Just before graduating with the Associate Degree of Nursing in 2016, Reine began thinking about continuing her education and explored a few brick-and-mortar BSN programs in her area. She learned about American Sentinel University in a magazine.
A good fit
American Sentinel met Reine’s needs, and she started the BSN program in fall 2016. For her busy life, American Sentinel was a great fit. “I liked the ability to do school around my work schedule, as I work nights,” she says. “The flexibility and affordability were both important factors to me. I was working full time, raising my kids and going to school.” Thanks to American Sentinel accepting some of her transfer credits from her first bachelor’s degree, Reine was able to graduate in one year in September 2017.
On for a nurse practitioner
Reine has worked as a pediatric nurse since May 2016. Now that she has the BSN, she is planning to start a Pediatric Nurse Practitioner program. “I’ve applied to one online program and I’m waiting to hear back,” she says. The PNP will take her three years to complete. When she’s done, she hopes to begin working in the more intimate setting of a doctor’s office—perhaps one attached to Albany Medical.
With 11-year-old twins who have cheered her on every step of the way, Reine says that her children both want her to get her master’s degree. “I showed them my diploma when I got the BSN and they were so excited,” she says. “They’ve seen me going after this dream for a long time. This will benefit all of our futures.”
Inspired by Reine’s story? A BSN is ideal for nurses who want to expand their knowledge base, become more marketable and enjoy greater career stability and mobility. Specialized knowledge forms the foundation of nursing and when you acquire new knowledge, you can apply it to nursing practice in ways that enhance patient care and improve outcomes.