Jo-Anna Vollink

Hometown

Sioux Center, Iowa

The Story

Scholarships I Received

  •  DC Distinguished Scholars
  • Instrumental Music Scholarship
  • IHERF Scholarship
  • Talsma Memorial Pre-Med Scholarship
  • Hugh and Eve Meeter Calvinism Award
  • Bailey Scholarship
  • Orange City Area Health Foundation Nursing Scholarship
  • Sioux Center Health Employee Scholarship

Favorite Spot On Campus 

Anywhere my friends were.

Favorite Class 

Human Biology

A Concept That Blew My Mind 

One of the most amazing things was learning about fetal development, especially how the cardiac/respiratory systems change after a baby is born. I'm often amazed by the intricacies of the human body and how everything has to work together.

What are some of the obstacles you've overcome? Obviously, going through nursing school was an incredibly challenging experience. The crazy hours and difficult content was intimidating at times, but it shaped me into a more organized and focused student. I had a couple classes that really were not my strong suit, like statistics, but I learned to use the resources around me like the AEC tutors. As a senior I was given the opportunity to give back by being a tutor myself, and it was really encouraging to look back on how far I had come academically in four years.

Cool Things I Did At Dordt 

Even though I was a busy nursing major, I was able to participate in several activities. My favorite one was touring Germany, Austria, and Hungary with the Concert Band. Exploring Europe with 50 college friends was a pretty amazing experience, and we got to perform in some gorgeous cathedrals. I loved going on and later being a part of the planning committee for PLIA, which is a club that organizes spring break service trips. I also participated in swing dance, bible studies, intramurals, and went on spur-of-the-moment weekend roadtrips with my roommates.

Who I Was When I Came To Dordt 

When I first came to Dordt, I was really excited about my major and getting to meet new people, as I had heard so many great stories about college from friends who were a few years older than me. The first day I was super nervous, but I made myself strike up a conversation with the girl in line next to me while we were waiting to take our ID pictures. Just being able to share in our first-day excitement together was a great encouragement for me to get out there and meet my new community. I definitely had no idea what I was getting into, but the support I felt as soon as I arrived (even just from the mass of strangers who helped me haul everything into my new dorm room!) was an amazing feeling.

How Dordt Impacted Me 

My four years at Dordt have shaped me tremendously. My classes helped me to become more articulate and willing to share my ideas and opinions. I was also definitely encouraged to look at my faith and think critically about why I believe what I do. Group discussions and late-night bathroom-counter-talks with my friends were incredibly formative in helping me better understand other viewpoints coming from people with very different backgrounds than I had. Dordt also gave me a lot of opportunities to learn both how to serve and to lead, which has made me more confident and willing to get involved in my community.

What's Next For Me

I am currently working at the Sioux Center Health hospital as a registered nurse on the MedSurg and labor units, and I will be training soon to work in the emergency department. I love the diversity of experiences that comes with working in a small-town hospital.

What I Would Tell Prospective Students 

Dordt has an amazing community, and one of the best ways to get into it is by trying a variety of activities on campus! I made some amazing friends by signing up for things like swing dance and PLIA. Be willing to try out a bunch of things and then stick with the ones that you love.

How Dordt Helped Me Do More 

My time at Dordt has made me a lot more confident and willing to speak up about issues that are important to me. I have gained a lot of practical knowledge about how to be a good nurse, but my experiences at Dordt go beyond just my nursing career. I have been equipped with a solid background of being able to engage with others who hold a different opinion than me while still listening, learning, and caring for them. I'm excited to take these skills into wherever life/my career leads me.