Mother, daughter team share nursing program experience

A photo of Renee and Kourtney Johnson

Renee and Kourtney Johnson will both have a live-in study partner to support them in their academic goals next year. The mother-daughter team will be enrolled in nursing courses at the University of Arkansas Community College at Batesville.

“I’m anxious and excited to have classes with my mom. It’s going to be a new experience. We’ll be able to work together, and we’ll have a study partner 24/7,” Kourtney said.

Kourtney took classes at UACCB as a Cave City High School student through the concurrent program and graduated high school with 18 college hours under her belt. She plans to enter the generic registered nursing program at UACCB. Renee, who will begin working with White River Medical Center after she graduates from the practical nursing program July 28, will continue her education in the RN program next year.

A graduate of Sulphur Rock, Renee said she worked in factories most of her life but always wanted to work in health care.

“There was nothing fulfilling about factory work for me. Every day I would go to work, do my job and go home. Now, I go to work and feel like I’ve made a difference at the end of the day,” Renee said.

She said her husband influenced her decision to return to school after he graduated from UACCB’s aviation maintenance program. When she was laid off from her job, it reinforced her decision to continue her education.

As for Kourtney, she was not certain what she wanted to do after high school. “I decided on nursing because there are so many areas you can go into. I’ve always wanted to travel. I like the idea of being a traveling RN. It’s a career you can build from, and there will always be patients who need someone to care for them,” she said.

Kourtney added that nursing appealed to her because serving others helps her excel. “Nursing takes a lot of compassion and combines a lot of skills into one profession. You have to have an open heart and an open mind. I’m at my best when I can help others,” she said.

Renee echoed her daughter’s words. “If you don’t love people and can’t communicate with them in the hard times as well as the good, then this is not for you.”

Renee said she was very proud to have her daughter following in her footsteps and to share their educational experience together. “It’s very humbling because you want to see your children succeed and to be an inspiring role model for them. For her to go through the program with me, I’m simply at a loss for words.”



Check out Renee and Kourtney's video here.