Amanda Herd

“Bow Valley College is helping me hit the ground feeling confident and empowered with all the skills in my back pocket that I need to be a great nurse.”

Amanda Herd knows firsthand how much of an impact giving can have on a student’s life. Her time in the Practical Nursing diploma program has helped her find new fulfillment in her life and consider how she can give back to others after all the support she’s received from both her family and Bow Valley College donors. Now as she prepares to graduate, she’s reflecting on how this support gave her the confidence to excel in her program, surprising even herself at times.

“I've always known that I am interested in health and wellness sciences,” Amanda shares. “I had no idea I was capable of the things I’m capable of and that I had the academic ability to do what I'm doing and help my fellow students learn. The whole experience in itself has empowered me.”

During her time in the program, Amanda received several bursaries and awards recognizing her hard work and commitment to learning, including the Dean’s Award for the School of Health and Wellness, the National Bank Nursing Bursary and the Edd McRory Memorial Foundation Bursary. Amanda says the support provided her with the ability to acknowledge her family’s sacrifice for her education in ways such as buying Christmas gifts for her kids during a time when finances were tight, and she’s grateful to the donors who made that possible.

“Bow Valley College has so many wonderful donors,” she says. “I would say thank you so much for supporting not only students, but their families and their communities. It makes a really big difference in somebody's life. Just having that feeling that there are good people in the world that want to just help other people succeed - it's a gift. It's just so gracious.”

Before starting the Practical Nurse Diploma program at Bow Valley College, Amanda was the single mom of two children and helped care for other kids in her community, driving them to school and offering support to other parents. As her children got older, Amanda had the desire to find additional fulfillment in a career and decided to take a chance on herself after an encounter with a nurse at a blood donation clinic who suggested she consider nursing. One month later, she was accepted into the program.

Now she’s looking forward to taking the next steps in her journey after she graduates.

“There are so many possibilities. That's the great thing about nursing,” says Amanda. “I think Bow Valley College sets you up to be successful. My whole world is starting up again - I feel like a kid again. To be able to show your children that education is possible at any time - it’s a gift and it changes the way you think and feel about yourself.