HARLINGEN, Texas – As a new parent, Jennifer Ortiz became concerned with her toddler’s health conditions — and that would inspire a new career direction for her.
“My son had a bacterial infection in his blood, bronchiolitis, and respiratory syncytial virus when he was 1 year old,” she said. “After I saw how well a team of nurses treated him, I knew I wanted to become a nurse.”
Ortiz first earned her credentials as a vocational nurse at an area medical college. That motivated her to want to do more for patients and led her to the LVN to RN Transition nursing program at Texas State Technical College’s Harlingen campus.
She first gained job experience as a vocational nurse at Valley Baptist Medical Center in Harlingen in 2021. A job opportunity arose at DHR Health, where she continued as a vocational nurse.
Ortiz recently received an Associate of Applied Science degree in Nursing from TSTC and now is a registered nurse at Harlingen Medical Center.
“I had a wonderful experience during my clinicals in the postpartum department at Harlingen Medical Center,” she said. “Now, as a registered nurse, I will continue to work in that same area. I learned that the team of nurses would also like for me to get trained in labor, delivery and nursery. I’m excited for my career.”
Jaime Garcia is a registered nurse at Harlingen Medical Center.
“I was Jennifer’s preceptor during her clinicals,” Garcia said. “I admired how she interacted and cared for the patients. She’s also an excellent team player who always looked out for the well-being of the staff. Most importantly, she knows how to prioritize based on what’s needed in every medical situation.”
Judy Medrano is a TSTC Nursing instructor.
“Jennifer grew to love her preceptorship experience in an operating room because she wanted to experience a new area of nursing,” she said. “She was highly motivated to learn as many details of nursing as possible in that area. That ultimately developed her into a highly skilled nurse and led to a job offer at Harlingen Medical Center before her preceptorship was completed.”
For more information about TSTC, visit tstc.edu.