Megan Kruse walked across the stage in Kardatzke Wellness Center on commencement day at Anderson University not too long ago.
A 2012 alumna, Kruse was a nursing major and member of the softball team while at AU. In August 2012, she began working in the cardiovascular intensive care unit at with Lutheran Hospital, which is based in Fort Wayne, Ind., and specializes in cardiac disorders and postsurgical patients.
Just two years ago, Kruse was in the classroom at AU. Now she is part of a unit that provides care to hemodynamically unstable patients, which are patients with unstable blood pressure. She also monitors multiple systems and nursing interventions, which are actions taken by the nursing team to help the patient reach a goal.
“The best part of my job is being able to see progress in my patients day to day or sometimes week to week,” said Kruse.
Kruse recalled one postsurgical patient who had to make two trips to the operating room because of bleeding. The doctor in the operating room allowed Kruse to stay in and observe, and now she takes care of the patient during recovery.
“It is amazing to me to know what her history is, to have seen it happen, experience it, and to see her walking and getting closer to going home,” said Kruse.
Because the uniqueness of her unit allows Kruse to form relationships with her patients, Kruse has found her work’s rewards go beyond the job description of her position.
“I love being someone that can brighten their day even a little bit,” said Kruse. “I love getting to know families and build relationships with each person I encounter. I had the privilege of leading one woman to Christ, and that was probably the highlight of my career so far.”
Beth Albertin, one of Kruse’s coworkers at Lutheran Hospital, was highly complementary of Kruse’s work.
“Megan is an exceptional nurse,” said Albertin. “She is successful in the workplace because she cares about her patients. Megan has a big heart and goes out of her way to do what is best for her patients.”
Now in her dream job, Kruse has not forgotten what her time in the nursing program at AU did for her.
“My education prepared me for my career by giving me baseline knowledge of body systems and some clinical experience to go off of,” said Kruse.
Along with being a nursing major, Kruse also found time to be a four-year softball player on a highly successful Ravens team. The classroom taught plenty of lessons, but her time in the softball program also served as an instrumental teacher.
“Playing softball at Anderson and majoring in nursing taught me time management,” said Kruse. “I had to juggle papers, studying, practices, games, and my social life. I really had to be disciplined in all areas and make efforts to have excellence in both.”
Kruse also credited softball with teaching her important leadership skills that she now uses every day in her career.
“I feel I am able to communicate well and make clinical decisions for my patients,” said Kruse. “I believe these leadership skills will help me even more if and when I pursue my master's degree to become a nurse practitioner.”
While Kruse has options for the future, she is passionate about the position she is in now.
“I love the unit I am on,” said Kruse. “I love the people I work with. This unit is very challenging and has helped me to increase my nursing skills and critical thinking immensely. I am happy to have started in intensive care.”
— Zach Wadley is a 2014 graduate from Bourbonnais, Ill., who majored in communication arts and minored in public relations. Wadley was an associate with Fifth Street Communications®, writing on behalf of the Anderson University Office of University Communications.
Anderson University is a private Christian university in central Indiana. Anderson University continues to be recognized as one of America's top colleges by U.S. News and World Report, The Princeton Review, and Forbes. Established in 1917 by the Church of God (Anderson, Ind.), Anderson University offers more than 65 undergraduate majors and graduate programs in business, music, nursing, and theology.