Celebrating UT Southwestern Nurses

During National Nurses Week, we celebrate our nation’s nurses – the nearly 4 million men and women who collectively work every hour of the day in order to help people live better lives. Here at UT Southwestern, we proudly recognize the roughly 2,500 RNs whose passion for our patients’ health is visible every day. They play a defining role in delivering excellence in patient care. And for that, we offer them a very special thanks for their inspiring work. Here are some of their stories.


Are you doing any better? A lot of times, I'm the first face they see as they come through the door. So, I started straight out of high school going to nurses training. I graduated in 1981 and moved to the Metroplex and started in the emergency room, and then I became a dialysis nurse in 2002. Your pain is better? I think my job is challenging. A lot of interactions with different people and different areas. I come in at 5 o'clock in the morning. As a charge nurse, I facilitate a lot of the other nurses that are doing the actual treatments, so that they can do the best job they can without taking care of a lot of minutia. I enjoy it. I feel like I can give something valuable to those I take care of. I want to be there to meet their needs.

Joined the Air Force when I was 24 years old. The Air Force kind of dictated my path towards healthcare, so I became an Air Force Medic. From that point on, I just had the drive for patient care. I've done medical surgical. I've done critical care. I've done emergency medicine and then I've done the OR. So, the first thing that we're gonna do. So, I retired in 2017 from the Air Force and I needed a place to live. And so, I started scoping out the healthcare scene across the United States and I really liked what I was seeing in Dallas. And then, UT Southwestern, I mean, it's kind of famous. I exist in the role of the clinical manager for education. I manage all of the educators that handle in-patient and outpatient clinics. I really love that I can really impact patient care and quality. A nurse is really the person that leads a patient and their family through the experience of either wellness or about the process of getting through illness.

Hi, Miss Hernandez. I've always been interested in caring for patients. I was a chiropractor for 20 years. About the same time my father became very ill. I was with him 24/7 through most of his hospitalization and then home with hospice. I saw the nurses and the staff that cared for him. And it moved me to such a great extent that I wanted to move into nursing. I started at UT Southwestern in 2010. When I got out of nursing school, I knew that UT Southwestern was the hospital I wanted to work at, because they always did things right and I wanted to learn how to be a nurse and do things right this way. You're orienting to charge today. When I am on the floor, I work as a charge nurse. Being a nurse, I feel so very privileged. Maybe you going home anytime soon? I do believe it is a servant's heart. It's the person who's willing to do the grunt work and not wanting to draw attention to themselves. I can honestly say that this is the only hospital that I wanted to work at. I feel like I belong here.

Hello, hello! I feel complete in nursing. I get to help people and it makes me feel good that I'm making other people feel good. Wound care, this is Walter. I've been a nurse at UT Southwestern for two years now. Nursing is fun. It's challenging. There's always something different going on. I never realized how many different aspects of nursing there were. The other ones are doing better. My eyes just light up. My wife says that they always light up when I start talking about the wound care. Healing a patient out from wounds? That's great. There's nothing better than that. I love being at UT Southwestern just for being part of the team. The teamwork, feeling included with the providers, just a great feeling.

Good morning! I wanna be the light, the sunshine in their day. I see on a normal 12th north day, from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m., 5 different patients, all different scenarios, all different situations. And you learn to connect with each one of them. The reason I got into nursing, I truly enjoy connecting with people, helping them. I always tell myself, as I've worked at other places, and not to say those were bad places or anything, but when I came here I actually felt I had the time to make the difference in my patients day. I'm very proud to be an employee here at UT Southwestern. A nurse to me means being an advocate for the patient. They need to mental and physical support and love and light to keep going and getting better.