6 Famous African American Nurses

In honor of African American History Month, Travel Nursing Central would like to recognize a handful of the amazing African American nurses from throughout history.

According to a Department for Professional Employees 2012 fact sheet, African American RNs make up just 10.4% of the nursing population. That leaves a lot of untapped talent out there, and we’d love to see greater diversity in nurse and travel nurse demographics.

Here’s a little bit about 6 famous African American nurses, who will hopefully be an inspiration for future generations of nurses and travel nurses:

Mary Seacole Nurse

Mary Seacole

Mary Seacole

Although she encountered discrimination, Jamaican-born Seacole was instrumental to pioneering nursing and medical care in the 1800s. She traveled on her own dime to treat wounded soldiers from both sides during the Crimean War, and also established a boarding house where injured patients could recover and rehabilitate.

Mary Eliza Mahoney Nurse

Mary Eliza Mahoney

Mary Eliza Mahoney

There were many who functioned as nurses before her, but Mahoney was the first African American licensed registered nurse. After graduating in 1879 and practicing, she went on to cofound the National Association of Colored Graduate Nurses and was also one of the original members of an early incarnation of the American Nurses Association.

Harriet Tubman Nurse

Harriet Tubman

Harriet Tubman

Her name is synonymous with the Underground Railroad and women’s rights activism, but Tubman was also a nurse who served the Union Army. In 1908 she also created the Harriet Tubman Home for the Aged, which specialized in caring for elderly African Americans.

Sojourner Truth Nurse

Sojourner Truth

Sojourner Truth

Born into slavery in 1797, she’s known mostly as an abolitionist and women’s rights activist, but Truth was originally a nurse for the family she served. Later in life she was instrumental in advocating for funding for essential nurse training programs.

Hazel W. Johnson-Brown Nurse

Hazel W. Johnson-Brown

Hazel W. Johnson-Brown

Twice named the Army Nurse of the Year, Johnson-Brown faced down racial discrimination to become a nurse (eventually with a Master’s and PhD. Her skill led her to become the first African American woman to lead the US Army Nurse Corps and also the first to be promoted to brigadier general.

Estelle Massey Osborne

Estelle Massey Osborne

Estelle Massey Osborne

The first African American woman to earn a Master’s degree in Nursing, she fought throughout her life for visibility and educational equality for all nurses.

There are SO many more great examples, but we hope this list of 6 famous African American nurses is inspirational.

As for the present day we invite you to check out the National Black Nurses Association (founded by another great African American nurse leader, Betty Smith Williams). Their mission is “To represent and provide a forum for black nurses to advocate for and implement strategies to ensure access to the highest quality of healthcare for persons of color.” Click here to learn more about the NBNA.

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Travel Nurse Contests: Furnished Finder and Tafford Uniforms

coffee cup with heart

What do these two contests have in common? Coffee!

I recently came across a couple of great travel nurse contests: Furnished Finder and Tafford Uniforms are both hosting some fun ones right now! Here’s a little bit of information on them. Get your game on!

Furnished Finder Property Review Contest

Furnished Finder wants you to share reviews of the three most recent properties you’ve stayed in while on assignment. The first 50 qualified folks will each win a $20 Starbucks gift card. Free coffee!

Click here to learn more about how you can win!

Tafford Uniforms American Heart Month Celebration and Contest

In honor of American Heart Month, Tafford Uniforms and Travel Nursing Blogs have teamed up to offer the chance to win a Littman Classic II Stethoscope. Three runner-ups will also win a Travel Nursing Blogs coffee mug with a $5 Starbucks gift card.

Click here to learn more about how you can win as well as 10 tips you can share for a heart healthy lifestyle!

Thanks for hosting these fun travel nurse contests, Furnished Finder and Tafford Uniforms!

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Make Yourself More Marketable, Step 3: Why am I not getting interviews?

Resume for Travel Nursing

“Make sure to promote your value by listing all relevant experience on your resume.”

By Jeff Della Rosa
The Right Solutions

You might wonder what you’re doing wrong. You might worry that it’s you. But you need to ask yourself some important questions so you can determine why you’re not getting interviews. In part three of the series, we’ll address those questions and what you need to do to get interviews.

Look at your profile to see what hospitals are seeing. (Check out our sample profile below.)  What can you improve before you show it to potential employers? Is your profile presented in a digital format or is it handwritten? How about color? Deion Sanders said the first step of being good is to “look good.”

The resume is a snapshot into your life. It’s what potential employers look at before they call you for an interview. Make sure to promote your value by listing all relevant experience on your resume. Present most of your accomplishments and job duties in bullet points. Most human resource employees spend a minute at the most on your resume, according to Forbes. Because of this, your resume should be concise. Bullet points allow for them to find keywords more quickly. You might have to simplify it to keep it from being too long. It should not be more than two pages.

Travel Nurse sample profileMaybe you have something in your resume that is turning off a potential employer. It’s important to not have employment gaps, or at least as few as possible. Share your experiences that have had positive outcomes. Strengthen your resume by listing multiple examples of these experiences. Consider writing out your objective in your profile. What do you want? Set goals and be specific.

Look at developing two resumes. One should be very detailed to include all your experience and skills. The second should be tailored to show that you have the experience to meet the requirements of the job you want. A resume that doesn’t show that you’ll excel at the desired position is the top reason most people aren’t getting interviews, according to U.S. News. Make sure your resume shows what you accomplished at your previous assignments. Don’t just list where you previously worked. This won’t tell a potential employer anything about how well you did at the jobs. People who get the most interviews list their achievements at each job. Human resource employees don’t care that you’ve worked a bunch of jobs in a row.

Write a cover letter that shows more than a summary of what you’ve already presented in your resume. If your cover letter is only a summary of your resume, it’s not going to help you, and you might as well not send one, according to U.S. News. A good cover letter will show why you will be good at the job you want. Be inspiring. Add some personality to your cover letter, and you’ll start getting calls for interviews.

Ask the right people to look over your resume and cover letter. You might have let multiple people look at your resume, and they tell you it’s fine. Don’t settle for a resume that’s fine. Make it great! Sometimes family and friends aren’t the best people to review your resume. Ask someone with hiring experience to look at it and provide feedback. A test to see whether someone will provide good feedback is to give them a resume with just a list of job duties instead of achievements. If they say it’s fine, you’ll know to look on for advice.

If you want a position in which you have no work history, explain to employers why you would be a great fit for the job. You can’t rely on them to figure it out. Others who are looking at the position you want might already have the needed experience to do the job. Because of this, getting this job will be a challenge. Employers might not be willing to take a chance on you when they have other applicants with previous experience in the position.

So we’ve covered three key areas on making yourself more marketable: promote your value, transition to advanced skills positions and how to get more interviews. We hope we’ve helped to make you more marketable. Good luck and go land your dream job!

Jeff Della Rosa is social media coordinator for The Right Solutions — a nationwide healthcare staffing company. Reach him via email at jdellarosa@therightsolutions.com. Find out more about The Right Solutions on our website, www.therightsolutions.com. Also, check us out on Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter and Pinterest.

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