Sisters pursue dream careers together

FAIRBORN — Laura Etienne and Staci Koski had a mutual lifelong dream – to become nurses. These Dayton-area sisters are pursuing their dreams, together, as nursing students working to earn associate degrees in nursing and preparing to become Registered Nurses (RNs) at the Fairborn campus of the Hondros College of Nursing.

“I have always wanted to help people in some way,” said Koski. “It was not until I began working in an surgery center at a local hospital that I finally figured it out. The nurses I worked with were incredible. They were so knowledgeable, compassionate and touched people’s lives every day. I wanted to be just like them.”

Both sisters were working in health-related fields before starting their education at Hondros College of Nursing. Koski worked in patient access at a local hospital since 2001, with experience in several different departments such as the emergency room, surgery center and physical therapy, while Etienne was a billing manager for a dental office.

“My passion is feeling like I’m making a difference in some way,” said Etienne. “Whether it is improving procedures or making someone smile, so basically my passion is success. Accomplishing my goals is an amazing feeling.”

Both sisters have said their educational experience has been a great preparation for careers in nursing.

“This is the hardest, most work I have put into anything other than raising my children,” said Koski, “but it will be worth every minute knowing I have touched someone’s life in some way. This journey would not be as special if it wasn’t for my husband Nathan and our four amazing children. One of the reasons I chose to pursue my education at this time is with two children that will be starting college in the next year, I wanted to show them you can accomplish anything you set your mind to.”

Both sisters are looking forward to continuing their careers as RNs upon completion of their education, but cite one factor as being the single most important factor in their ongoing success.

“The best part of this adventure is I’m not alone in it,” said Koski. “I am doing it with my best friend, my sister. We have always been close, but nursing school gives that a whole new meaning. When one of us is feeling overwhelmed the other is always there to pull them back and get their mind back into the game. There have been several times throughout this journey that one of us has felt it is just too much but the other brings it back into perspective and here we stand half way through the RN program with only two and a half terms left. A lot of people say it is too much togetherness and they could never do it with their sister but I can’t imagine doing it with anyone else.”

“The best part of this whole experience for me has been doing it with my best friend since birth, my sister, Staci,” added Etienne. “This is an experience I will never forget.”

Etienne also credits her husband, Danny, and her two sons, Brayden and Bryson, as they are her “everything.”

“They’re the reason I work so hard,” she said.

Both sisters agree that this dream was something worth waiting for and that they would encourage anyone seeking a new career to just follow their heart.