Hey Mountaineers, meet Deanna Reary! She is a senior here at Appalachian with just a few weeks left to bestow her wisdom upon us. Deanna has managed to do what many come into college believe to be impossible: she’s balanced her social life, work, school, volunteering… and not only has she been accepted into the graduate program of her dreams, she also has been invited to be part of the accelerated nursing program at East Tennessee State University! Want to know her secret to surviving college, having fun, and continuing to be successful?
Hometown: Boone, NC
Major/ Year: Health Promotion/Senior
Hobbies: Being outdoors, driving around aimlessly, going out with friends, and being at Parthenon
Celeb Status: Accepted into East Tennessee State University’s Accelerated Nursing Program
Q: Deanna, what made you want to come to Appalachian? Did you come here knowing you wanted to go into the health care field?A: I originally didn’t want to come to App, I thought I was going to go far, far away from Boone. My first choice was UNCW, and I was accepted, but I love the atmosphere in Boone, and all my friends are here, and I can be close to my family. Also, UNCW doesn’t have Parthenon so….
Q: A lot of collegiettes struggle with picking their major, what made health promotion click for you?A: I knew I wanted to go into the health care field somehow, and I knew that getting my undergraduate degree in Health Promotions would give me a solid base for figuring out what it was I really wanted to do with my life. Minoring in healthcare management also allowed me to see the business side of the medical field not just the clinical aspect of it. A lot of it also had to do with my internship at Cardio Pulmonary Rehabilitation at The Wellness Center here in Boone. I loved forming relationships with my patients and I knew the healthcare field is where I wanted to be.
Q: What are you involved in on App State’s campus?A: I’m a founding sister of Zeta Tau Alpha, and I was the founding President of Health Occupations Students of America club at Appalachian.
Q: Being a health promotions major means long hours and a lot of work, how did you manage to balance that with an active social life?A: It was definitely difficult at first and I definitely put my grades on the back burner at the beginning, so I played catch up a lot. I had to realize, especially this year, that I can’t go out as much and put my social life first all the time. I had to be up for my internship and keep on top of my school work to make sure my grades stayed solid for applying for nursing schools. I also realized that my social life wasn’t the only thing that me happy, actually getting involved in the career I wanted to be in did too.
Q: What about East Tennessee’s program appealed to you?A: It’s an accelerated program, so I will be graduating a year earlier. I really like Johnson City, it’s not too far from Boone either. I already have some friends in the program and know people in the area that really liked it too.
Q: What exactly does the accelerated program entail? How did you get invited to participate in it?A: It means that I’m going to be going to school for essentially a year and a half instead of a full two years for the traditional program, so you start clinicals very quickly. To be invited you have to be extremely qualified, have a solid GPA and involvement on campus, and be a second-degree seeking student that is driven to succeed in the program.
Q: What do you hope to accomplish once you have finished your graduate program and have settled into the field? Any specific place you’d like to work or live?A: I want to get my Masters eventually, and possibly become a Family Nurse Practitioner. Right after nursing school however I would like to begin working in the Emergency department at a hospital. It’s hard to say where I’d like to live… I would like a bigger area, somewhere like Charleston or Wilmington where it’s warm. I don’t want to have frozen tears on my face as I walk down the road…
Q: What are you going to miss the most about Appalachian?A: Parthenon and Nick. On a serious note, I’m going to miss my roommate. She’s like my little sister so I’m going to miss her a lot. After living with somebody for three years you get attatched to them so finding another roommate I’ll love as much will be hard. I’ll miss all my friends really. I struggled a lot at first when it hit me that I was going to graduate, but I’m so lucky to have these people to come back to. I’ll miss the atmosphere too, I love walking in places and seeing people I know and having a great time with them. I’m so thankful that I’m going to be able to come back to the place that has given me such great memories for the past four years.
Q: If you had to offer advice, not school related, to undergraduates at App State what would it be?A: Make sure that you are investing your friendships in the right places. Not just party friends, take time to make friends with people that will be there after you graduate. If you can, try to find an apartment within walking distance from campus and the bars, you’ll save yourself a lot of time and money. Also, you’re never too old to enjoy a drink with Nick at Parthenon. Rush Delt. Wear as many oversized t-shirts and leggings as you can, because you can’t do that in the real world. It is possible to break your foot a sorority formal, so don’t get too crazy. Don’t forget to enjoy every minute of your college career.
Q: Do you have any advice to undergraduates applying to graduate schools?A: Sit back. Breathe. Don’t let yourself get too overwhelmed. Make sure that you make your grades your top priority; it’s hard but do it anyways. Be involved with as much stuff on campus as you can. Try to find a really, really good internship.
Q: What do you think you’ll be remembered for?A: I’m notorious for loving Fireball, being the “party mom”, and being an overall just horrible driver.