Meet Lauren Snapp
Lauren Snapp, 25, will graduate in December with her bachelor of science in nursing. The Science Hill High School alumna and Johnson City native earned her LPN in 2014 and, since starting her journey at ETSU in 2015, has experienced an awful lot in terms of life, and loss. She is the secretary of her graduating class and recently completed a term serving on the Tennessee State Nurses Association board. In addition, Snapp serves as the Mountain States Health Alliance ambassador for the ETSU College of Nursing. Through her work with the university’s Appalachia Senior-level Community-based Experiences in Northeast Tennessee (ASCENT) project, Snapp also spends time working at several clinics operated by the College of Nursing, including ETSU’s Student Health Clinic.
Q: Why nursing?
A: Growing up, I spent a lot of time in the hospital because my dad was so sick. I watched the impact the nurses there had on him and my family and I just loved the idea of being a caregiver. They were able to make such a positive impact on us and that has always been my motivation for becoming a nurse.
Q: You lost your dad shortly after starting at ETSU. Tell us a little bit about that.
A: My dad battled diabetes for a long time. When I was in elementary and middle school, he went through a lot of the complications associated with diabetes. He had heart disease and had a heart attack when I was 11. Right before I graduated from LPN school, he went into end-stage renal disease, and had to go on dialysis. I don’t think people understand just how hard that is on the person – mentally, physically and emotionally. He went through dialysis for two years, but in the meantime, he had further complications, which included amputations. He lost his battle in December 2015. That was my first semester of the nursing program at ETSU, so it was really, really hard. I’ve been able to cope because I know this is what he wanted me to do. Education was so important to him. He was an educator for 36 years. He’s always been my motivation, my driving force in life. With him not here with me, there’s even that extra motivation to be the best caregiver that I can be.
Q: You have been busy planning an event in his honor. What is that all about?
A: Traditionally, the College of Nursing’s senior class does a fundraiser. The funds are raised to give back to the community in some way. As a nursing student, I asked myself how I can do something before I leave ETSU to remember him and to honor him. I brought up the idea back in the spring of doing a gala to raise money and awareness about diabetes. My classmates loved the idea. That is how the event came to be. So, on Nov. 18, we’re having dinner, dancing and an auction in the Grand Soldiers Ballroom at Carnegie Hotel. A small portion of the money raised will go back to the college for scholarships and the greater portion is going to the American Diabetes Association.
Q: What are your goals/plans after graduation?
A: Immediately after, I have accepted a position in Labor and Delivery at Franklin Woods Community Hospital. I’m very excited about that. Ultimately, I’d love to go into diabetes education. I’d also love to come back to ETSU for my master’s in nursing.
Q: What is your philosophy on life?
A: My philosophy on life, I got from my dad, and that is just to treat people with
kindness, the way you’d want to be treated. And that is everyone, no matter where
they come from, what they do or even what they’ve done in the past. Just always be
good to people and it comes back around, for sure.