Nursing topnotcher got the news in the US; raring to return to PHBy Erika Sauler
Philippine Daily Inquirer
While most nursing graduates aspire to pass the professional exam, gain a little job experience and then leave to work abroad, this year’s topnotcher of the nursing boards is already in the United States, raring to gain experience and more education before returning to serve in the Philippines.
“I will definitely go back to the Philippines. I owe my country a lot and I’m really sad that I can’t serve there at the moment,” said Roxanne Trinity Dotingco Lim, who is now with her family in Auburn, California, in an online interview with the Inquirer.
“I will go back when I am an expert in my field. That way I know I can serve better,” she added.
Lim, who graduated in 2012 from the University of Santo Tomas, came out on top of more than 27,000 who passed the nursing licensure exam given in June—out of 60,895 who took the test—with a score of 86.20 percent.
As a student, she said she always strove to be the best but struggled to find her niche. Acing the board exam was affirmation that she was in the right profession, she said.
Lim said she was reluctant to take up nursing at first because she was aware of the many jobless nurses in the country. But her parents’ appreciation for the profession won her over.
“They see nursing as a very special course. It’s a profession that can be a means to serve the Lord,” she said.
Her father still runs a pharmacy in their hometown in Eastern Samar, while her mother, who used to be a medical technologist, is now a nurse in the US.
Lim, 20, was born in Taft, a fifth-class municipality in Eastern Samar named after US President Howard Taft. She studied at Taft Central Elementary School then at Philippine Science High School-Eastern Visayas campus, where she lived away from home because of its distance from the school.
“For the sake of receiving quality education, I endured my longing for my family,” she said.
She was on her third year in college in Manila when her parents and three younger brothers moved to Auburn for the same reason that many Filipinos leave the country. “My parents wanted to give us a better future, they wanted to search for new opportunities and try out a new life here,” she said.
Lim followed them shortly after taking the nursing exams administered by the Board of Nursing of the Professional Regulation Commission.
“I want to spend as much time with my family as possible and make up for lost time. I have decided to work here as a nurse for a few years,” she said.
When the test results came out on Aug. 23, Lim’s boyfriend texted her his congratulations on topping the exam. She said she couldn’t believe it and, although bursting with excitement, she waited patiently while checking the PRC website before barging into her parents’ room with the good news.
“I was so happy that I accidentally got hit by something while jumping for joy. I didn’t notice it until I saw the blood on my leg,” she said.
Burying her nose in nursing books instead of curling up with a favorite novel or going out with her cousins and friends paid off. But she did take some time off from studying once in a while.
Studied hard, prayed harder
“Our bodies are not programmed to work every day of the week. It is also good to stop, let ourselves relax and enjoy what life has to offer,” she said. “I studied hard but I prayed harder. I prayed with all my heart and I can say that it was my greatest weapon.”
Lim said she planned to pursue a master’s degree and was waiting for the result of her application to the National Council Licensure Examination, a licensing test for nurses in the US.
“I was so engrossed with aiming to be at the top that I think I may have pushed myself too hard and forgot what really mattered in life. Looking back, I think my reason is that I don’t really know what I’m good at. I don’t have any talent or special ability,” she said.
“But through nursing, I now know what I love to do. I love serving others.”