Cootamundra Hospital welcomes nursing graduates

WELCOME: Murrumbidgee Local Health Networks's Jenny Apps, Aileen Buckley and Karen Cairney with Member for Cootamundra Katrina Hodgkinson and graduate nurses (front) Lucinda Headland and Jess Collett. Picture: Jennette Lees

WELCOME: Murrumbidgee Local Health Networks's Jenny Apps, Aileen Buckley and Karen Cairney with Member for Cootamundra Katrina Hodgkinson and graduate nurses (front) Lucinda Headland and Jess Collett. Picture: Jennette Lees

New nurses are like gold in the country and Cootamundra Hospital has welcomed two nursing graduates from the University of New England into their ranks.

Lucinda Headland, 25, and Jess Collett, 21, commenced work at the hospital last month and have been exposed to the gamut of what regional nursing has to offer. 

They are among 76 graduate nurses across the Murrumbidgee Local Health Network. 

Lucinda is a local girl while Jess hails from the small town of Iluka, population 1700, near Yamba on the north coast. 

Both completed their studies at the University of New England last year.

“I wanted to remain rural and work in the most independent field of nursing possible,” Miss Headland said. 

She initially started a law degree but found it impersonal and switched to nursing. 

Miss Collett spent her younger years aiming for a career in teaching. That is until she went to a university careers day and saw the nursing stand. 

Both girls were sold and haven’t looked back. 

They are settling into Cootamundra Hospital well. 

“We have had so many opportunities that you never think you’ll be exposed to,” Miss Collett said. 

“It has been really hands on but really great,” she continued. 

Miss Headland is enjoying the diversity Cootamundra Hospital brings. 

“If you are in a city, you’re only in one area. Here we can look after a baby just born right up to a 98-year-old with a broken hit,” Miss Headland said. 

“We are able to be very hands-on and have a wide exposure,” she continued. 

Both girls cut their nursing teeth as Assistants in Nursing at nursing homes, Miss Headland at the Cootamundra Nursing Home, before graduating as registered nurses. 

They were officially welcomed to the hospital by Member for Cootamundra Katrina Hodgkinson and staff from Murrumbigee Local Health Network last Friday. 

Not all work for these girls, they are enjoying integrating into the community. 

Both played in the Coota Beach Volleyball Carnival last month and have been taking in the district’s sights between hospital shifts. 

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