CANA Global CONNECT Vol. 1, Issue 1 – CANA Scholarship

Making Dreams Coming True

The CANA Scholarship Recipient: Huan Wang, RN


My name is Huan Wang, a nursing student at Rory Meyers College of Nursing, New York University. This is my second semester. Thanks to the reference letter from my professor and accumulated 4.0 GPA, I am the recipient of the CANA scholarship. The scholarship means a lot to me. Not only financially, but also emotionally. It makes me more confident on my way to chase my dream. Today, I am glad to share my experiences with you.


I graduated from the top college of Chinese Medicine, Beijing University of Chinese Medicine. The excellent faculties and four affiliated 1500-bed comprehensive hospitals provided me with hands-on experience right from the start. Luckily, my A+ Final Practice score, and 3 recommendation letters, one from my Professor and two from my previous patients, helped me land my first job at China-Japan Friendship Hospital, which is identified as Class A, Category 3 level, which is the highest level in Chinese hospitals, in Beijing. Two years of this experience has taught me many things, such as how to remain calm under pressure, and excellent prioritization skills to adapt to the constant changes of the patients’ conditions.


When I was working in Chinese Traditional DM department (medical/surgical floor), I found that it was important to educate the patients. Health principles, if misunderstood, can harm patients even further. One of my patients, a Chinese male at his 40s, couldn’t control his blood sugar, especially after meals, when it fluctuated around 200. We couldn’t figure out the reason until he told us he had been eating congee every meal since diagnosed because he thought eating less rice would ease controlling his blood sugar. Another patient, failing to understand how insulin functions inside a human body and thinking starving could help to cure her diabetes, skipped her lunch after insulin. As a result, she got hypoglycemic shock. Patients need someone to guide, teach, and help them. In the U.S., this misunderstanding can even be significantly worse due to inaccurate translation and cultural differences.


I became a member of CANA from May this year. I have participated in several community health events focus on Chinese population. I’ve seen so many Chinese elders experiencing a difficult time when they seek medical care: some of them fail to adhere to the doctor’s instruction due to misunderstanding the sophisticated medical terms even though they have been living in New York for decades; some of them are fearful to express painful feelings due to traditional culture; some of them tend to smile when they are embarrassed or angry; some of them cannot go to the hospital because they are afraid of jeopardizing their citizenship, let alone those who do not have legal documents. To be able to solve these problems, I need to go into more in-depth fields. This role can only be accomplished by the health care providers, such as nurse practitioners. Compared to doctors, who mainly focus on medical issues, nurses and nurse practitioners are able provide recommendations to modify the healthy behavior of the patients and advise patients what they should do in their daily lives to improve their quality of life.


Now I am pursuing my master’s degree in Adult-Gerontology Primary Care at Rory Meyers College of Nursing, New York University. After I graduate, I will be an Adult-Gerontology Primary Care nurse practitioner, focusing on providing long-term care to older people. With a better understanding of Chinese culture and native Mandarin speaking, I hope I can be the bridge to between Chinese Americans and cutting-edge medical service so that Chinese Americans can receive appropriate medical care when they need it. I feel so rewarded and honored to be a nurse, especially when I see patients with severe injuries or critical operations recover and regain their health. I love being a nurse and hope to have nursing as a lifelong career, although it will be a hard path, and even harder in the U.S. than in China. CANA is the most impactful nonprofit Chinese American Nurses Association. I believe with the help of CANA, more and more students like me can make their dreams come true.

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