This fall, and especially in the midst of our current adjustments to the pandemic, EMS is pleased to welcome nurse Patty Oakland who joins us from Steamboat Mountain School. Patty has worked at SMS since 2015, and she’ll split time between the two campuses each week while supporting and evolving the health program for students and faculty at each school. Patty’s career experience as a registered nurse spans emergency medicine, public health, pediatrics, neurology, and forensic medicine. She states, “My work within emergency departments has led me to learn how much the average person does not know about their own body, health, or medicine. It reaffirms for me that knowledge is power and prevention can be achieved through education.” Patty is trained in disaster and emergency preparedness, has worked with United States Veterans medical outreach, and has made numerous educational presentations focused on sexual education and consent. Likewise, she completed volunteer medical mission work with the Maasai tribe in Kenya, and she adds, “One of my most memorable experiences in Africa was removing a pencil eraser from a child’s ear. It was such a humbling reminder of how people all over the world are so similar. Most of my ER career has been removing foreign objects from children’s ears.” Patty attended William Jewell College in Kansas City, Missouri, graduating with a double Bachelor’s of Science in nursing and critical thought and inquiry, with a minor in coaching and performance enhancement. She is currently working on a double Master’s of Science in nursing with an emphasis in forensics and criminal justice from Xavier University. She is a graduate of Steamboat Springs High School and an alumna of the Steamboat Springs Winter Sports Club as a freestyle skier and later as a coach. She shares her love of Steamboat with her husband and two sons, who enjoy partaking in the Mountain School’s various activities and delicious food. Regarding her favorite things about working in a school, Patty states, “Hearing a student or educator repeating something I taught them to someone else. I love how we share knowledge. My heart also melts when students of any age that I work with stop to say ‘hi’ or tell me how their day is going. I believe that the relationships I get to build as a nurse in a school setting are far stronger than in any other specialty.”