How a nurse beat COVID and pneumonia on the way to her degree

As a nurse, Sharon Seales Reid was used to hard work, as her day-to-day work life kept her busy with around-the-clock patient care. Her goal with going back to school for a bachelor’s degree in healthcare management was to take that nursing expertise and combine it with the administrative side. 

In March of 2020, she began working with InsideTrack Coach Jodi Rafkin. “I could tell from the first time we met that Sharon was really committed to getting a better life for her and her family,” Jodi recalls. Jodi and Sharon clicked right from the start, and their partnership saw immediate results. “Working with an InsideTrack coach helped me stay on course, and plan a better educational foundation. Having Jodi help me map things out has been a weight off my shoulders.” 

A potentially derailing diagnosis

Sharon didn’t want to simply graduate — she wanted to graduate summa cum laude. By January of 2021, she was on track to do so, with a 96.5 in her course. Then came the double-pneumonia and COVID-19 that landed her in the hospital for more than a week. Worried that her grades and graduation goal were in jeopardy, a panicked Sharon reached out to her coach. “You just focus on getting better,” Jodi said. “You don’t understand … I have to finish this,” was Sharon’s reply. “You will,” Jodi reassured her. “We want you back,  but we want you better.” 

“I want to be a pillar of the community, someone people can look up to and say ‘if she can do it, so can I.’”  – Sharon Seales Reid, RN

Behind the scenes, Jodi worked with school administrators and the Ben Hudnall Memorial Trust program manager to come up with a solution. In the end, Sharon was able to continue with her coursework and stay on track to graduate — with honors. “I want to be a pillar of the community,” Sharon says. “Someone people can look up to and say ‘if she can do it, so can I.’” 

Empowered to advance

Next up for Sharon: a master’s degree in healthcare management. She feels that adding a healthcare management degree to her experience with patient care is a natural fit. “By combining the business side with the clinical side, I have the best of both worlds.”

“There is no limit. I can go as far as I humanly, possibly can.” – Sharon Seales Reid, RN

Her past success has given her the confidence she needs to continue, paving the way for her future successes. “And with what I have behind me, there is no limit. I can go as far as I humanly, possibly can. Maybe even CEO.”

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