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Nursing Student Spotlight: Meet Michaela Gubics

Nursing student Michaela Gubics stands with kidney transplant pin

When she was just a few days old, doctors diagnosed nursing student Michaela Gubics with chronic kidney disease (CKD). Throughout her life she has dealt with the effects of her illness and has struggled to do things that she enjoyed. As Michaela got older and entered middle school, she noticed she was becoming more fatigued than normal, especially when she got home from school.

“I noticed a shift in me. I would have to take a two-to-three-hour nap before starting my homework and noticed that I would easily become winded even though I was in extremely good shape,” Michaela said. Michaela played sports in addition to taking classes. “I was determined to continue to play. I completed my summer training, but once I started practices it was too much for my body to handle. I had to stop playing sports completely, right before my freshman year of high school,” she explained.

In 2017, Michaela received a kidney transplant, and has since learned how to balance her school and social life while living with her illness. The transplant improved her life immensely. “For a few months after my transplant, I suffered from survivor’s guilt, but after a conversation with my mom, I realized that I had two options. I could sit in a hospital bed and dwell on my personal thoughts, or I could make a difference in others’ lives that were in similar situations as I was in,” Michaela said. She continued, “There was only one clear way that I knew I could make a difference, and that was to become a nurse.”

Michaela took the leap and applied to the Bryant & Stratton College, Akron campus. “What stood out to me about Bryant & Stratton College was the hands-on learning that I would receive in the nursing program. I am a visual learner, making labs and clinicals a deciding factor for me. The small class sizes were also important to me as I have learned that is how I work best,” Michaela shared.

Michaela has just entered her second year in the nursing program and is on her way toward earning her associate degree to become a registered nurse. She received a college scholarship from the Kidney Foundation of Ohio. The scholarship helps a deserving kidney patient or child of a patient achieve their academic goals. Michaela also qualified for Bryant & Stratton College’s matching scholarship program which also gave extra relief to Michaela and her family.

Michaela’s goal, once she graduates with her degree and completes her licensing exam, is to work in the neonatal intensive care unit. “I am most excited about being able to help babies become healthy and well enough to start their lives outside of the hospital,” Michaela said. “It would be so rewarding to help them become strong enough to go home.”

To learn more about Bryant & Stratton’s nursing program click here.

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