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Nurse Extern Program Gives Luke and Camryn Hands-On Experience

Jun 27 2022
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For Luke Call (pictured above right), finding a career that would allow him to help new people every day was always his goal. Luke grew up in Wellsville, Ohio and when it was time to pick his major in college, there was no question that nursing was what he was meant to do.  

As for Camryn Marshall (pictured above, left), she always had a strong passion for health care because she grew up in a family of nurses. Her calling was clear as well – she was meant to be a nurse, too.

Knowing they wanted to have the most experience possible before entering the workforce upon graduation, both Luke and Camryn became student nurse externs in our Youngstown market. Our extern program enables nursing students to work side-by-side with a registered nurse as a per diem employee after they’ve completed their first clinical rotation in nursing school. For most students, that time comes at the beginning of their junior year or second year of school.

The goal of this program is to rotate the externs through different units until they find the one that they’d like to work in after they graduate. This exposure helps students like Camryn and Luke learn new skills through direct observation, while also improving their basic patient care skills.

Additionally, one of the biggest advantages of this program for students is they receive first selection on any open jobs they are interested in within Mercy Health – Youngstown. They are also deeply integrated into the nursing profession on day one of their new job.

Luke and Camryn were members of our 2022 nurse extern program, which also produced the largest extern class our Youngstown market has ever had. In February, both attended a hiring fair as an opportunity designed just for the externs and were hired.

Luke graduated this spring and has a job waiting for him as a registered nurse in the med-surg/intermediate market float pool. He is excited to start on July 3 and exercise his gifts.

“After having worked for Mercy Health – St. Elizabeth Boardman Hospital for the past two years as a student nurse extern, I have grown very comfortable within Mercy Health as an organization,” Luke shares. “I have really enjoyed my time as a nurse extern and already knew that I would want to continue to work for this ministry as a registered nurse after graduation.”

As for Camryn, starting July 5 she will begin her nursing career at St. Elizabeth Boardman Hospital in the emergency department. She graduated from UPMC Jameson this spring.

“After hearing friends had such great experiences working at Mercy Health, I wanted to know more,” Camryn explains. “I did some research and after reading about the ministry’s values, I knew this was the organization for me.”

As Camryn prepares for her new role, she says the most rewarding part of her job is seeing her patients get better.

“To be a nurse means to be with people on their best and worst days,” she shares. “It takes a lot of caring, kindness and patience to be a nurse, something I am excited to do every day. It is also rewarding when you get to watch your patients learn something new. I had been doing my preceptorship in a labor and delivery unit where we are with our patients on one of their happiest days, where we get to help them learn all the new things about caring for their baby.”

To Luke, the most rewarding part of his job as nurse is making connections with his patients. He looks forward to being able to continue doing that in his new role.

“Although those crisis situations where you can save a patient’s life are very rewarding, I think the most rewarding aspect is simply going into your patient’s room and having a conversation with them about something unrelated to their health,” Luke says. “Being able to make a positive impact on them and brighten up their day when they may be at an all-time low is something that is very special to me.”

We’re thrilled to welcome Luke, Camryn and all our other nurse externs who are starting to join our ministry. They will be exciting new additions to our Youngstown team!

Learn about the health care services we offer at Mercy Health.


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