Nathan Koranda, BSN, RN, NRP
Stories of Florence Nightingale’s compassion, bravery, and leadership have shaped modern nursing and influenced and inspired millions. As we celebrate the 200th anniversary of her birth, we are honored to shine a light on today’s #NurseHeroes on the front lines by sharing some of their stories.
This is Nathan’s story.
What often sticks with me is the sound of pain. A loved one crying out for someone they care about. A kid struggling to navigate through a difficult childhood, or someone desperately trying to get sober.
Describe why you chose to become a nurse
I got into medicine because I wanted to help people. I didn’t start out as a nurse, I started my career as a paramedic. The part of the job that I found most interesting was the mental health calls. It was a patient population that was underserved, under respected, and deserving of compassion and kindness. I wanted to refocus my efforts in mental health and chemical dependency. I went back to school and received my RN. I’ve since been working in child and adolescent mental health, first responder mental health, and young adult chemical dependency. Those experiences have been some of the most rewarding experiences of my personal and professional life.
Describe your most rewarding day on the job
It isn’t a single day. It’s a collection of moments. In mental health you get to see some extraordinary changes. Society dismisses those they fail to understand. I’ve seen kids develop remarkable coping skills, develop rock solid determination, and propel forward into what I hope is only success and happiness. It’s the hug, handshake, and smile of the people I serve that means the most to me. It’s watching someone find their potential. I’m so proud to be an RN and feel blessed that I have the ability to take a small part in some astonishing change.
Describe your most challenging day on job
I realize the jobs are separate (RN and Paramedic), but I have a hard time separating the two. I’ve seen some challenging things in the last seven years, including loss of life. What often sticks with me is the sound of pain. A loved one crying out for someone they care about. A kid struggling to navigate through a difficult childhood, or someone desperately trying to get sober. The most challenging day on the job is the day where you realize your own limitations and recognize that you can’t help everyone with 100% success. You’re as human as the people you care for.
Do you have any nurse hacks or lessons learned in the field you would like to share with others?
I’m still learning. Understanding that has helped me appreciate some difficult moments on the job.
What’s a favorite quote of yours?
I’d like to be remembered as a guy who tried – who tried to be part of his times, tried to help people communicate with one another, tried to find some decency in his own life, tried to extend himself as a human being. Someone who isn’t complacent, who doesn’t cop out. – Paul Newman.
For those looking for a way to help others, is there a charity you suggest?
Steve Rummler Hope Foundation. They have worked tirelessly in the state of MN to create awareness around the opioid epidemic, pass important legislation addressing addiction, and training laypeople on the use of naloxone. They care and they care well.
Thank you for all you do, Nathan!
Thank you for helping us honor Nathan and the profession of nursing, Cassie. We salute you!
Do you have a story to share?
While our team at ShiftWizard believes all nurses are heroes, we’d like to hear who you feel has gone above and beyond. Help us honor a fellow nurse or nurse leader whose actions have inspired others in these unprecedented times, and let’s celebrate nursing together!
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We are honored to support our frontline teams and we are here to help you meet your challenges head on.
Send your nurse story to us at firstname.lastname@example.org or let us know how we can help you.