Chris Cooper ’19 chose Shenandoah because of the Eleanor Wade Custer School of Nursing’s Accelerated Second Degree BSN program. Cooper also chose to come to the university because of its location in the Shenandoah Valley.
Cooper’s fondest memories of his time at the university were going out with his classmates after clinicals to reflect on the experience as a group. “I was so fortunate to be with a group of motivated and positive classmates,” said Cooper. “Being able to work with good people can never be taken for granted.”
Cooper is a critical care nurse for Superior Air-Ground Ambulance Service in Elmhurst, Illinois. In this role, he performs assessments and treats patients who need critical care in the transport environment. Cooper also facilitates the transfer of these patients to the proper healthcare facility. Prior to his current position, he was a trauma and emergency room nurse.
The most rewarding experiences in Cooper’s career as a nurse is stabilizing patients in a crisis. He finds it very fulfilling when the patients’ family members thank him for the care their loved ones received from him.
Cooper believes that his education from Shenandoah has helped him secure a successful career in the nursing field by showing him how to analyze information in a short amount of time and to focus on the fine details that are necessary to pay attention to in a critical situation.
“In an environment that is regularly hectic and fast paced, the ability to focus and think clearly to establish steps to a solution is essential,” said Cooper.
Cooper’s advice to current and future students is: “Flexibility is your friend. Don’t get distracted by people or events around you. Focus on the steps right in front of you, which will get you to where you are trying to go. When the challenges come, face them and keep learning from them. Repetition and perseverance will enable your knowledge and skills to grow much better than merely a textbook.”