How I Got There: Nursing | Jessica Herrera (MSN ’17)
Jessica Herrera has a Masters of Science in Nursing from Georgetown University and is now a Certified Nurse-Midwife (CNM) at Orlando Health. Learn how Georgetown shaped her path, what led her to her current position, and more insights regarding her company and the broader health industry:
What activities at Georgetown did you find the most valuable and why?
As a student at Georgetown University, I was an active student member in our professional organization as midwives, the American College of Nurse-Midwives. This included volunteering for government action committees. As the governing body of CNM/CM, this allowed me to begin my journey with my professional organization prior to becoming a full member.
During my time at Georgetown, I also participated in an advocacy day on Capitol Hill. This afforded me a terrific experience to advocate for the health care needs of Americans. This launched me into a volunteer structure within ACNM to support advocacy for maternal and women’s health. Since my time at Georgetown University, I have done many advocacy activities including returning to Capitol Hill to meet with my Congress people.
How did you find your current position?
My current position was actually where I was placed for my clinical experiences while attending Georgetown University. While attending Georgetown’s state of the art hybrid online program, powered by 2U, I was placed in a clinical setting to meet my needs as a student. As I spent a great deal of time here learning with my preceptors, I developed a relationship with everyone in this setting which ultimately led me to find a position within the very practice that I trained.
What does a typical day look like for you?
The life of a midwife is a busy one. I am in a hospital-based midwifery practice. My daily job entails outpatient care in the ambulatory clinic setting and inpatient hospital-based care. This includes full-scope midwifery care for women across all spans of life; a full array of reproductive and gynecological care including of course, what most people think of when they hear “midwife,” delivering babies!
I am also involved in many aspects of the profession, which is supplemental to my job, including the CNM advisory board for state licensing, involvement in ACNM political action committee, becoming an expert trainer in surgical first assisting for midwives for ACNM, publication review for ACNM, clinical preceptor for Georgetown students, etc.
What surprised you the most when you started working?
How well prepared I was! When Georgetown University sets you loose into the real world, it is very intimidating. I never realized how well my Georgetown education prepared me until I was knee-deep in advanced practice nursing.
What skills are most needed in your role?
Flexibility! Midwifery is an ever-changing profession, as is healthcare as a whole. Remaining flexible and keeping your mind open to knowledge and learning are essential as you venture out into advanced practice and midwifery.
What are the best ways for students to learn more about your industry?
GET INVOLVED! Get involved in Georgetown University opportunities for midwifery, ACNM student opportunities, reach out to local midwives, Facebook groups, etc. In the healthcare industry, midwifery specifically, we are dedicating to growing our profession. We want “our young” to be well prepared, have a great understanding of the profession, and feel they are well supported by those that have journeyed before them.
If you could go back and change one thing, what would that be?
Honestly, in regards to my Georgetown education, nothing! This MSN program [Master’s of Science, Nursing], specializing in midwifery and women’s health, is top of the line. I would challenge you to find a better program that prepares you at a higher intensity than Georgetown.