August Alumni Spotlight: Ashley O’Hanrahan ’19, BSN, RN

Name: Ashley O’Hanrahan BSN, RN
Grad Year: 2019
Program: AAS Nursing
Current title & position: ACT IMPACT RN, BestSelf Behavioral Health

What led you to the Nursing Program at Trocaire?

I have always wanted to work in healthcare since I was a little girl. When starting college, I wanted a fast track to get into the field and start my career. Trocaire was that route for me. I completed my prerequisites prior to applying, and so the 2-year registered nursing program was what was next on my checklist to complete for my career.

Describe your Trocaire experience. What does Trocaire mean to you?

Graduating from Trocaire was truly an accomplishment. If you talk to any nurse, regardless of school, it is tough. Thankfully, I did have some great faculty and staff support throughout my education who I still keep in touch with now.

What do you do now, and why do you love it?

I am a registered nurse on the Assertive Community Treatment (ACT) team  at BestSelf. An ACT team provides mobile intensive treatment and support to people with psychiatric disabilities. This position is everything I have been looking for since first graduating nursing school. For some clients, we are their only support, which makes our job very rewarding.

What do you find fascinating about the mental health field specifically?

Mental health is so interesting to me and always has been.  You see so many different presentations of mental illness when working in the field, and it just fascinates me more than medical diagnoses. The brain is such a powerful organ– by studying and working in mental health you’ll never run out of new things to learn about it.

Any advice you like to share to new nurses or someone interested in Trocaire?

To anyone interested in nursing or newer nurses, give everything a shot. Explore a bit in each specialty, especially in clinicals or whenever you’re able, as you might not know how much you enjoy something. Or, you could be dead set on a specialty and end up hating it in clinicals. There are so many options for nursing careers, from work-from-home insurance options to surgical nursing to cosmetic nursing. Find your niche—this will help you thrive. Nursing is a hard career and a lot of work but it is so rewarding and enjoyable when you find the part of healthcare you enjoy.