“Like mother, like daughter” is a saying that describes Haley Gruhler and her mother in their personalities and now in their professions.
In fact, when it came time for Gruhler to decide her next steps after high school, she knew she wanted to be a nurse, just like her mother.
“Her passion really inspired me,” Gruhler said. “It made me realize how rewarding being a nurse can be.”
Gruhler, a 2021 graduate of UToledo, works as a registered nurse at The University of Toledo Medical Center in nephrology, an internal medicine specialty that focuses on the kidneys. She enjoys the fast-paced environment of caring for transplant patients and the uplifting atmosphere created by the hope the patients and their families bring to the unit.
“I am learning quickly how to properly communicate and prioritize,” Gruhler said. “These skills are crucial when you are taking care of multiple sick patients. Knowing who you should see first and how to communicate with other professionals is critical.”
During her time as a University of Toledo student, Gruhler worked as a nursing assistant at UTMC while taking classes. Assigned to work in pre-operative services, she helped with COVID-19 testing for patients’ pre-procedure appointments.
The College of Nursing provides students opportunities to learn hands-on in different specialties at hospitals in the community. Gruhler completed clinical experiences in medical-surgical, pediatrics and psychology, among many others, which are serving as invaluable opportunities in preparing Gruhler for her real-world, on-the-job challenges.
When classes got tough, Gruhler was not alone. The College of Nursing encourages helping one another and sets up a mentorship program each year between its students. Gruhler’s mentor was two semesters ahead of her and was someone she could go to for advice. Her mentor had already been through the same struggles with classes, which allowed her to have a source of support all the way through to the end of her program.
Her classes combined lecture material with hands-on lab activities. She credits anatomy as being her favorite class, one that was paired with a cadaver lab where students learned human anatomy.
“Attending a college that offers a four-year degree was very beneficial because it allowed me to have more time to experience things,” Gruhler said. “We had the base foundation from our prerequisite classes and I felt like that gave me an advantage to be successful in the nursing program.”
Aside from working at UTMC, Gruhler said she hopes to return to school to get her master’s degree and then teach.
“During my time at UToledo, I learned that I really enjoy watching others succeed and hope to further my career to become a clinical instructor and help future students,” Gruhler said.