My name is Jennifer, psychiatry PA-C and graduate of the Nova Southeastern University – Fort Lauderdale campus PA Program. I was able to obtain my PA-C career aspirations as a divorced single mother of one awesome little girl.
But let me tell you … it wasn’t easy! Allow me to briefly walk you down memory lane.
I’m a South Florida native and the daughter of Haitian Immigrants (Shoutout to all my Zoes!). I enlisted in the U.S Army after high school where I served as a 68K – Medical Laboratory Specialist. Once discharged, I returned home and became a board certified/licensed as a Medical Laboratory Technician.
….And that’s when life hit the pause button on my career. What felt like a drastic overnight change – suddenly I was a wife, homeowner and stepmother struggling with a high risk pregnancy all while readjusting to civilian life.
I was overwhelmed to say the least, but my drive and passion for more wouldn’t let me stop. While 6 months pregnant I enrolled in college for the first time. Being the daughter of immigrants – there was a lot about college, finances and navigating adulthood in America that I had to learn on my own. Numerous mistakes, frequent attacks of self-doubt, a toxic marriage that eventually led to a divorce and single parenthood were just a few challenges that I would have to overcome along the way. My entire college experience (both undergraduate and graduate) has been as mother. I’ve changed my major many times and there have been semesters where I’ve had to either reduce my workload or not attend school at all. I finally graduated in 2016 with a bachelor’s degree in Healthcare Administration. That same year I submitted my CASPA application and was accepted into PA school.
I have always been drawn to the medical field, but it took a few years, trials and errors before I took the steps to fulfilling my PA quest. I had to find the courage and confidence in myself to just go for it. I searched endlessly for someone else out there who could relate and help guide me on this journey… but my results often came back empty. This would eventually lead to the birth of The PA Café.
The road up until this point hasn’t been a smooth one. The PA Café highlights the daily grind and misadventures that comes along with being a mom in PA school. I hope that sharing our personal experiences will not only encourage you but also help you navigate the ups and downs of parenting in PA school.