Meet Tasha M. Lea, BSN, R.N. (MHSA ’14), a Strayer alumna who did it all—from managing work and life to earning a master’s degree.
Goodbye, light blue scrubs. Hello, crisp lab coat.
A nurse manager for Duke Primary Care in North Carolina, Lea manages patient care and personnel needs for 21 staff at her clinic. This includes everything from promoting patient education to hiring nurses.
How does Lea manage this juggling act?
Juggling Medicine and Leadership
It’s simple. Her long-term interest in medicine and leadership.
Lea says her training as a registered nurse, combined with her recently acquired Strayer University master’s degree, prepared her to take on myriad responsibilities.
“I like to work with people, and I like taking care of people,” she says.
After completing nursing school and securing her license, Lea worked as a nurse at University of North Carolina Hospitals.
Then, an even bigger jump.
She transitioned from being a clinical nurse II to a clinical nurse III. This move required higher-level management responsibilities.
Lea picked up an Aspiring Nurse Leader Award from her employer along the way. She realized being a trailblazer made her happy.
Great Nursing Leaders Require a Master’s Degree
“Everyone has an area of special interest in nursing,” she says. “Leadership is something I was drawn to.”
To help her reach those leadership goals, she decided to pursue her master’s degree, scheduling her evening graduate classes around her 12-hour workdays.
“In nursing school, you learn the clinical skills. It doesn’t really teach you the business side of healthcare,” she explains. “The health care systems want leaders to have master’s degrees. Now I can combine my business knowledge with my clinical knowledge. I can be, hopefully, a great nurse manager. I’m excited to get started on this new path.”
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