Frances Clark grew up in a small town in South Carolina and went to the University of South Carolina to major in Art.
But then life happened. She fell in love, got married, and moved to Montross (Westmoreland County), Virginia, where she realized she needed skills in order to get a job.
Not really knowing what she wanted to do she took her mother’s advice to study nursing and was accepted into RCC’s nursing program. At RCC she met Catherine Courtney, founder of RCC’s nursing program, who encouraged and nurtured her through her journey to become an RN.
Practical Experience at RCC
“I liked the nursing program at RCC because they gave us practical experience, not a lot of writing papers,” says Clark about her days at RCC. “Once I got my RN I worked at Tappahannock and then Mary Washington hospitals with flexible shifts so I could take care of our children.”
“The last 12 years of my career I worked in Interventional Radiology. They worked us hard. It’s funny but I don’t remember the easy or light days. I remember those hard days. The days you didn’t think you could make it but the interactions with the patients made it worthwhile.
Simple things like washing someone’s hair, holding an elderly patient whose lungs and heart were failing, laughing and crying with them. These are the moments I recall most.”
These days Clark is on the other side as a patient herself. She’s grateful for the excellent team of nurses she has on her side but misses being a nurse.
“Mrs. Courtney would be proud of me. I turned out to be a great nurse. I had a great career as a nurse and never lost a patient unexpectedly,” says Clark.