Douglas College Nursing grad pursues career as a doctor

Photo by David Denofreo

Johnny Truong knew for a long time his future involved helping others.

The Douglas College Nursing degree grad started his education at Simon Fraser University, taking General Sciences and Health Sciences before deciding on a career as a pharmacy technician.

While working in the pharmacy, Truong volunteered at a nursing home, where he was drawn to the interaction nurses had with patients.

“I’ve always had a huge passion for helping others,” he said. “I wanted that direct patient care to be a part of my career, so I decided to pursue a four-year Nursing Degree at Douglas.”

After graduating in 2014 and working in hospitals as a registered nurse, Truong is ready for the next change.

The 28-year-old applied and has been accepted to a number of medical schools in the United States, where he will pursue a career as a doctor.

As with his admission into Nursing, entry into medical school is challenging. In the interview process for medical school, Truong drew upon his experience at Douglas College to guide him.

“I had an interviewer tell me that my medical education started the day I began the Nursing program. And that’s how I grew. My time at Douglas is where I draw from when I’m being asked the questions about my experience,” he said. “Working with different teachers and people inspired me to become who I am.”

With acceptance letters to medical schools in Florida and New York, Truong is one step closer to his goal.

Truong intends to become a general practitioner with a focus on preventative care to stem the stream of people who come to the hospital. In his career as a nurse, he has come to understand the critical nature of preventative care.

“In the States, hospital visits can be expensive and not the friendliest place,” Truong said. “I want to be a primary care physician so I can help people before they reach that point.”

He notes his experience as a nurse will be essential to his success as a doctor.

“I would say the relationship between a nurse and doctor is the most important to have for positive patient outcomes. Nurses are the ones spending the most time at the bedside with patients – they are the eyes and ears for physicians,” he said. “Having trust and working together as a team is the only way to provide safe, competent and dignified care.”

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