Adela Tann had her future all figured out. She completed the Patient Care Technician program at South Texas College in 2013 and enrolled in the college’s Vocational Nursing program, graduating in 2015. Next on her list was earning the title of registered nurse. But before she could pass the National Council Licensure Examination, Tann moved to Iowa to help care for her sister, who was diagnosed with terminal cancer.
In 2017, she returned to Texas and passed the test, earning her the title of licensed vocational nurse. But then this single woman, a resident of Pharr and a naturalized citizen from Torreon, Coahuila, Mexico, who worked as a provider and earned $9.75 an hour, suffered another setback. Doctors diagnosed her with thyroid cancer.
Tann completed her treatments and was preparing to pick up her career plan where she left off when she suffered a stroke that resulted in partial facial paralysis. This added another dimension to the language barrier that seemed to be a constant in her academic endeavors.
Overcoming And Discovering
In the fall of 2019, Tann enrolled in composition and psychology, two prerequisites required before students can apply to the Associate Degree Nursing program, which provides students with the credentials they need to take a licensure exam and, upon passing, become a registered nurse. She passed and was accepted into the program in 2020.
While at STC, Tann learned about the Valley Initiative for Development and Advancement, a nonprofit organization that utilizes a wraparound approach, providing financial assistance, college and career counseling, and other services to help Valley residents overcome life’s barriers and move out of poverty and into high-paying, high-demand jobs through education. Tann, now in her mid-40s, applied and was accepted.
Because of the demands of the ADN Program, Tann reduced the number of hours she worked as a health-care provider. VIDA’s financial support significantly lessened the impact of a smaller paycheck. In May, Tann fulfilled the plan she set into motion back in 2013.
“Without VIDA’s help, I would not have achieved my goals,” Tann said.
Tann is currently working and studying for the NCLEX-RN exam. When she passes, she will be able to dramatically increase her salary because she will be a registered nurse.
With VIDA’s help, Tann completed the plan she never lost sight of.
“VIDA helped me achieve my goal and have a better future,” Tann said. “I have no words to thank them for all they have done to support me.”