It’s not an uncommon story — a student changes their major and finds their true passion through experiences outside of the classroom. For Alexandria Williams, this story fits her UToledo experience perfectly.
Williams started her first year at UToledo as a marketing major. Although she enjoyed marketing and business, her real interest was in volunteering and helping others.
“To complete volunteer hours for the organizations I was in, I volunteered in patient registration at UTMC,” Williams said. “I really liked the problem-solving and teamwork aspects of healthcare.”
At the end of her first year, she decided that nursing was a better fit for her future career path.
“I thought that if I continue my education, I can combine my career in nursing and interest in business to become an entrepreneur,” Williams said.
On the other hand, choosing to attend UToledo was easy for Williams. She decided to become a Rocket not only because her mother is an alumna, but also for the University’s progressive approach to healthcare education — including the Interprofessional Immersive Simulation Center and other opportunities for students to receive hands-on experience before stepping foot into a healthcare facility.
She completed clinical experiences at ProMedica Toledo Hospital, The University of Toledo Medical Center and Mercy St. Vincent Hospital. Her last semester was devoted to organizations that aren’t typically covered for clinicals, including the Boys and Girls Club of America and the Cherry Street Mission. Her clinicals ranged in specialties from labor and delivery and NICU to ICU and emergency medicine.
“I really like how The University of Toledo gives us different exposure to many hospitals and organizations [in the area].”
Outside of classes, Williams is a member of Tri Delta Sorority, Relay for Life, Lambda Sigma Honor Society, Order of Omega and a student ambassador for the College of Nursing. As an ambassador, she served as a mentor for first-year nursing students.
Dr. Linda Lewandowski, vice provost for health affairs for interprofessional and community partnerships, dean of the College of Nursing and interim executive director of University Health Services, said that Williams, with her passion for nursing and for helping others, found the right career path.
“It is clear that Alexandria has found her true calling in nursing and is already engaging in ways to make a difference,” Lewandowski said. “She is correct that nursing is such a versatile and varied career and that there will be many opportunities to combine her interest areas of nursing and business.”
Williams advises fellow Rockets that changing your major or career path is more than OK.
“Don’t be scared to explore and see all the different types of fields,” Williams said. “Don’t be afraid to change your major.”
After graduation, Williams will start her first full-time position in the operating room at ProMedica Toledo Hospital. She hopes to go back to school to complete her Doctor of Nursing Practice, eventually working in plastic surgery and potentially opening her own business.
“I absolutely love nursing,” Williams said, “and if I were to do it all over again, I’d choose nursing.”