Rural Health Scholarship Recipient
Living in a rural town in northern Wyoming has both challenges and benefits, says American Sentinel student and Rural Health Scholarship recipient Britni Camino.
The Casper, Wyoming, native grew up on a ranch, where she learned the value of hard work and serving one’s community. “I went to college thinking about radiologic technology but followed in my roommate’s footsteps into nursing,” says Britni. She graduated from the University of Mary (North Dakota) in 2007 and started her career at St. Vincent Hospital in Billings, Montana.
Home to Wyoming
In 2008, Britni and her husband moved back to Wyoming by way of Buffalo, where her parents and husband are from, and she started her career at the local hospital, Johnson County Healthcare Center. As a nurse, she often precepted nursing students from Sheridan College, the local community college. “That sparked me to return to school for an MSN,” she says. “Lifelong learning is part of being a nurse, and the idea of teaching was very appealing to me. My husband and I didn’t have children yet and it seemed like the right time to build my career options.”
Britni also became a part-time faculty member at Sheridan College in 2011, teaching Associate Degree Nursing students and clinicals for first- and second-year students. In 2013, she finished the MSN in Nursing Education online from University of Mary, where she’d earned the BSN as well.
A doctorate in the back of her mind
After several years of teaching—and loving her job—Britni started thinking about continuing her education. “I have this passion for learning and after the MSN, the doctorate was my next step,” she says. She researched doctoral programs and found American Sentinel University. “By then I was a mom of two young kids so I needed a great program that was also achievable. The Doctor of Nursing Practice Educational Leadership seemed like it would help expand my options.” In fall 2019, Britni began her studies.
Rural Health Scholarship winner
Britni learned about the Rural Health Scholarship a few months into her DNP education and applied on a whim. She was notified soon thereafter that she was one of the selected recipients. “It really came at the right time and is a huge financial burden off my shoulders,” she says. “But more than that, it reaffirms my passion, and reminds me that if I instill my care and compassion for nursing into my students, I’m fulfilling my purpose. I loved learning and teaching before this, and earning the Rural Health Scholarship makes me love it even more.”
Building her teaching resume
Britni has taught part time at Sheridan College since 2011, and she became an adjunct faculty member for the online RN-BSN program at Boise State University in 2017. In January 2019, she became the co-lead faculty for Boise State’s RN-BSN program as well, making her doctoral education pursuits well timed. In addition to her teaching positions, she continues to work per diem at Johnson County Healthcare Center, serving the people in her rural community—whether their needs are hospice care, critical care or labor and delivery.
Online learning: an opportunity to learn from anywhere
Online education has opened doors of opportunity for Britni—and the students she teaches. She is so passionate about online and distance education, in fact, that she has served as chairman of the Northern Wyoming Community College Distance Education Committee for Sheridan College. “I want to continue teaching at Boise State and possibly elsewhere,” she says. “Here in Wyoming, we have one university that’s six hours from where I live. But in today’s world of online learning, I’m fortunate enough to be able to teach from anywhere and learn from anywhere.”
Holding a Doctor of Nursing Practice Educational Leadership will help her achieve her goals for education. “There is a big shortage of nursing faculty today and I want to be a part of the solution,” she says. “I know this degree will further my love of learning and help me reach my professional goals.”
American Sentinel has created the Rural Health Scholarship program to help healthcare providers and patients overcome obstacles that are different than those in urban areas. Eight scholarships are awarded per year. Congratulations to this quarter’s recipients. Learn more and apply here.