Joy Okeze is a full-time nursing student who hopes to one day follow in her late mother's footsteps and build a women's clinic in the place she was born—Nigeria.
Joy Okeze, a full-time nursing student and nurse extern in labor and delivery, was born in Nigeria where her mother worked as a nurse. When her mother passed away when Joy was younger, she knew that she wanted to follow in her footsteps.
“I wanted to find a way to honor her and to ensure women's and infant services in Nigeria had the technology, expertise, and care they needed so that little girls like me did not have to grow up without a mother,” Joy said.
Though she’s now less than a semester from graduation, being a student nurse hasn’t been easy. To stay balanced, she relies on a planner that goes with her everywhere. Most importantly, she remembers the importance of being intentional with her time.
On extra hard days, Joy remembers the saying: no rain, no flowers.
“Without the tough, gloomy days, the days with the most reward and beauty would simply not exist,” Joy said. She keeps that saying—and the knowledge that her dream is within reach—in mind to stay dedicated and push through every obstacle that comes with working while being a student.
Joy, who was inducted into Sigma in 2022, is excited to take the next step in her nursing career and use her Sigma membership to grow, develop, and make connections in her field. In five years, she hopes to be thriving in her role in labor and delivery and well on her way to becoming a Certified Nurse Midwife. One day, she hopes to return to Nigeria and build a women’s clinic.
Through it all, she remembers a valuable piece of advice that was shared with her: “You must always be open to learning and growing. While it is easy to get stuck in your old ways, it is always best to have an open mind and be eager to learn and develop in your career.”