Johnson City, TN now but came from Asheville, NC where I lived for ten years. I was born and raised in Taylorsville, NC.
Undergraduate School and Major
Graduated with Associates in Nursing from a Community College in Hickory 1996 (CVCC); Obtained my BSN from Western Carolina University 2002; did undergraduate work for medical school at UNCA
I worked as a Registered Nurse in the Emergency Department for eight years and I have a very strong interest in emergency medicine. Although, I do not know for sure what specialty I will choose, it is early still.
I enjoy getting out in the woods as much as possible. Currently I am training for a 10k race in March. I like to mountain bike and road bike as well.
I have been married for ten years.
Heather A. Farley
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Quillen is a great place for me because it offers an environment that I think is very conducive to learning. The class size is small so we get a lot of attention from the faculty and you actually get to know your instructors pretty well. Our class is very close knit and we are very supportive of each other. I remember in the first week of orientation we were all given this advice; we are all in this together, this is a team sport, bring someone along with you and I think my class really took this to heart.
Being a Quillen Student
One of my big focuses for me, coming into this, was balance. I was very worried that balance would be an issue for me but I actually found that once I consciously balanced things in my life and refused to compromise on certain things, such as, getting regular exercise or going to church, that it was not as bad as I thought it would be. My first semester I was able to volunteer, play intermural sports, go backpacking on my fall break and do way more than I thought was possible, in addition to keeping up with my course work. The best advice that I had received was that you can always study more; there is always something else that can be learned, so if you want to do something you just have to do it.
I worked at Mission Hospital in Asheville, NC for ten years as a Registered Nurse. Most of that time in the emergency department but the first couple years I worked on a pulmonary step-down unit. Before being a nurse I was a patient care tech in a long-term care facility, so for me healthcare has been the only career that I have ever wanted to do. When I started working as a nurse, it was my first time being around physicians and immediately I was drawn to their profession. Working as a nurse was wonderful and I truly loved it but I always felt myself reaching forward, wanting to know more and wanting to be able to do more for my patients, so in 2006 I started back to school.
Words of Wisdom
I think that Randy Pausch in his book The Last Lecture really said it best; brick walls are there for people who don't want it bad enough, and I think this has some truth to it. If being a physician is your dream, then study hard, get experience in the field and just really make yourself stand out in the crowd.