Helping people is what Brooke Roberts does as a registered nurse at Beaumont Hospital in Royal Oak.
But in a recent interaction with a patient, the 2016 St. Clair County Community College graduate went well above her job description.
A homeless Marine Corps veteran had come in for care, and when he told Roberts his story, and his concern that his belongings could be lost or stolen, she sprung to action, heading out after her shift and collecting his things.
“God played a big part in that,” Roberts said. “The patient, he doesn’t have a family. I was trying to be his family for him. I felt like I needed to do it. He was getting ready to have a major surgery, and the only thing he was worried about was his belongings. I felt like I could help him, and that’s how.”
Roberts said that in her profession she attempts to calm her patients, while filling the voids in their lives.
“That’s kind of who I am,” she said. “I do it at work, and I do it in my life away from work.”
The 36-year-old knew she wanted to be a nurse since high school, and had served as a nurse assistant for several years. While she attended college in Florida after high school, she said it didn’t work out with her young son at home, and she decided she didn’t want to go back until he was older.
That opportunity came in 2014 when the New Baltimore resident enrolled at SC4, and was soon accepted into the nursing program.
“One of the instructors there, Kathleen Fraley, she had a big impact on me,” Roberts said. “She was a good mentor. She helped me kind of believe in myself. There’s always that doubt when you’re going through the program that you’re going to fail. I don’t know why, but it’s just there.
“As tough as it was, she kept me motivated, because I knew I had to keep going. The instructors really pushed me.”
While it was rigorous, the program also proved fruitful, as Roberts was offered her job at Beaumont just weeks after graduating.
“I’m proud to say that I went to SC4,” Roberts said. “I see students from other schools, even Michigan State and Michigan, they didn’t get the experiences I got at SC4; not to mention the tuition is way cheaper. It’s amazing how a lot of the things I learned still are in my head.”
(Photo: Brooke Roberts, center, at the 2016 SC4 Nurse Pinning Ceremony.)