Freshman Madison Watson has gone from ICU patient to student nurse.
Last year, Watson survived a fractured pelvis, broken rib, injured neck and damaged spleen in a car crash that landed her in St. Mary’s Medical Center for 12 days, most of which were in the Intensive Care Unit.
The ordeal also helped the Stuart resident clarify her career aspirations: she knew she wanted to be a nurse, and she wanted to study at Palm Beach Atlantic.
While Watson was in the hospital recovering, she befriended her nurse, Jenna Martin ’17, an adjunct clinical professor and student in the University’s Doctor of Nursing Practice program.
Martin helped Watson endure excruciating pain by writing down the times when she would next receive her medication. After one of her shifts ended, Martin brought Watson food that she craved from being unable to eat for 10 days and stayed to talk about nursing and life.
At the time, Watson was undecided about whether she wanted to study business, teaching or nursing. She made up her mind after meeting Martin and other nurses from PBA as a result of her car crash, she said.
Martin credits PBA’s integration of faith for equipping her to best care for her patients.
“It’s really hard for me to understand how people can be in nursing without knowing Christ,” Martin said. “When you have the foundation of Christ, which PBA helps you with, it gives you a different worldview for how you do your job and interact with people.”
Nurse and former patient reunited in Oceanview Hall, home to the School of Nursing, this fall for the first time in nearly a year.
“I want to help people like you do,” Watson told Martin at that meeting.
And she wants to be an ICU nurse just like Martin.
“Those are the coolest nurses,” Watson said. “It’s not the same every day. I think if I did the same thing every day, I would be bored.”
Photo: Madison Watson, a freshman studying nursing, and Jenna Martin '17, a Doctor of Nursing Practice and Watson's ICU nurse, pose for a photo in Oceanview Hall, home of the School of Nursing. Watson decided to attend PBA and study nursing because of Martin and the other nurses who graduated from PBA who she met during her hospital stay.