Registered Nurse, Critical Care, Auckland District Health Board
Bachelor of Health Science (Nursing)
Seeing the impact nurses have on patients’ lives inspired her to become a nurse herself, says AUT nursing alumna Aleisha Patard who now works in Auckland District Health Board’s critical care unit.
“I worked very closely with nurses in my previous job as a healthcare assistant and got to see what a huge asset nurses are to the healthcare team, and how they make a difference to patients and their families on a daily basis in a huge variety of settings and specialties. This inspired me and made me want to pursue a career that would allow me to be in a position to do the same.”
Her next decision – where to do her nursing training – was an easy one for Aleisha.
“I chose to study nursing at AUT because I wanted to attend a university that provided a lot of hands-on experience, and I had heard that along with amazing placement opportunities, they have great lecturers, clinical tutors and guest speakers.”
Finding the right path
For Aleisha, the clinical placement in her last semester was a bit of a lightbulb moment and helped her discover which area of nursing she wanted to work in after graduating.
“I had spent the whole degree amazed at the variety of settings that I could work in and the places this career could take me. This made it hard to decide what area I wanted to go into as a new graduate nurse. I was lucky enough to have my last 10-week clinical placement in a critical care unit and this was a massive eye opener and very humbling. Critical care is a very challenging yet extremely rewarding area of nursing, and my placement made me realise this was the specialty I wanted to work in.”
After graduating at the end of 2019, Aleisha has now fulfilled her dream of working as a critical care nurse.
“In this role, I assess and monitor critically unwell patients, and administer a variety of medications or treatments. I work with a multidisciplinary team and communicate the patient’s condition and advocate for their needs. I also work alongside the patient’s family, and guide them through this difficult time and explain what is going on for their loved ones in a way that they understand. Being able to care for someone when they’re in a critical condition while helping their families navigate unchartered waters is a unique privilege.”
Advice for other students
It’s okay to doubt yourself, Aleisha advises other students.
“The nursing degree will bring you a variety of emotions, and you’ll have moments where you feel like you want to give up. The important thing is to stop and breathe, and remember why you chose this path.”
She would highly recommend AUT’s nursing degree.
“Through my time at AUT I’ve made lifelong friends. I faced obstacles that challenged me beyond what I expected and shaped me into a different person, while making memories that will last forever.”