WCU Alumni Spotlight: Audrey Ochoa

We had the opportunity to sit down with West Coast University Alumna Audrey Ochoa, BSN ’18 to discuss her experience at WCU. 

Tell us what inspired you to become a nurse?

Growing up I was always around nurses. My mom is a nurse and I used to love to look at her books and try to read them. I always thought my mom was somewhat of a superhero for what she did and I wanted to be exactly like her.

My little sister was born she was a premature baby so my family spent months in the NICU and I remembered those nurses being so caring and nice. It made me want to be that person for someone else who might need it someday. 

What made you choose WCU?

I chose West Coast University because I knew that it wasn’t going to be easy. I liked the fact that it is accelerated because it really makes you work and challenges you. I am the type of person who works better at a faster pace so for me It was the perfect fit. 

What was your WCU experience Like?

My experience was amazing. I have zero complaints. There were times where I was stressed of course, but it never felt unmanageable because of all the resources that the school offers such as tutoring, pals, student services, and career services. 

What was your favorite thing about WCU?

My favorite thing about west coast university is how well they prepare you for the real world. My transition from student nurse to RN has been so smooth because the way that west coast university teaches, especially their simulations.

What was your least favorite thing about WCU?

I genuinely have nothing that I wasn’t happy with at west coast university, maybe the uniforms could be a little easier on the eyes, but other than that I felt that the whole institution was conducive to my learning. 

What advice would you give to new students coming to WCU to be successful?

My first piece of advice is to not let other peoples experiences scare you. You get out of this program what you put into it. The next thing that I would do would be to tell them to find their study group early on. Study groups make all the difference. Also, utilize all the assistance the school offers.

Which clinical was the most fascinating for you?

Mental health. I had no clue what I was going to run into. I was actually terrified because I thought it was going to look like how it does in the movies, but I ended up loving it and it helped me in my theory class because I was able to correlate what I was seeing in clinical and apply it to theory. 

Describe the faculty that you had, were there any that inspired you?

I had an amazing faculty. One the I will never ever forget was Dr. Youseff, he was the first instructor I had for my anatomy class. He was all about the students and went out of his way to help us in his class. He was overall just the nicest person and genuinely cared and helped motivate me to be the person I am today. I don’t think he knows or the school knows the impact he has on all his students, but he is amazing. 

Can anyone be a nurse?

No. I think it takes a certain type of person. Which isn’t a bad thing necessarily. But to be a nurse you need to be able to be completely unbiased at all times. You need to be able to know how to care deeply for others, but also not let it impact the care you give. It’s emotionally taxing. 

Describe what it was like to take the Exit Exam versus the NCLEX.

They were actually really similar, but if you can pass the exit you should have no issues passing the NCLEX. Also, I found studying for my exit was perfect for my NCLEX because they cover the same bases. 

WCU provides career guidance and assistance but cannot guarantee employment. The views and opinions expressed are those of the individuals and do not necessarily reflect the beliefs or position of the school or of any instructor or student.