In her six years of learning and service at Western Nevada College, Laura Kruse has learned how to pay it forward. As a peer mentor in WNC’s Counseling Office on the Carson City campus, Kruse has helped guide many new students through the registration process. Now, as she graduates Monday, Kruse plans to help countless others in the future through her chosen profession.
Kruse will cross the stage Monday to receive an Associate of Applied Science Degree in Nursing.
Reflecting on her education at WNC, she’s thankful for all those who have helped her along the way.
“There have been so many people that have contributed to supporting my academic endeavors, including my parents, teachers and friends,” Kruse said. “I also met my fiancé through a friend in the nursing program, which is one of the best things that happened during school. There has been a whole range of experiences that I have had during my time here, but to sum it all up, I would say that it has been time very well-spent and I wouldn’t change a thing.”
Kruse began taking classes at WNC while being home-schooled as a 15-year-old, earning a Health Information Technology degree in 2011.
“The nursing program on campus has a great reputation, and at the time I was already enrolled in the Health Information Technology degree, which proved to be the perfect transition into the health field,” Kruse said.
For the past four years, Kruse has also worked as a peer mentor in the counseling office, helping new students meet deadlines and guiding them through the registration requirements.
“I like variety, and working in the counseling office always provides this chance to answer new questions and work with different challenges,” Kruse said. “Everyone brings their own perspective and background. Even making a small impact on another person is a privilege.”
WNC Counseling Services Director Deborah Case said Kruse has brought many qualities to her position.
“Laura has done an excellent job. She is very knowledgeable, friendly and clearly cares about the students she is helping.
“She performed these duties while meeting the demands of the nursing program, which requires students to take two years of prerequisite classes, followed by two years of more complex classes focused almost entirely on nursing. We will miss her.”
“My immediate short-term goal is to regain some of the sleep that has been lost in the last two years and learn to cook something besides ramen noodles,” Kruse said. And of course, she intends to prepare for the National Council Licensure Examination in June.
“This is my last step in gaining licensure as a registered nurse,” she said. “I have enrolled at UNR for the fall and am going on to complete my bachelor’s degree. From there, I am planning to continue with my education and become a nurse practitioner.”