Hometown: Alton, MO
Currently Resides: Alton, MO
Occupation: Registered Nurse (RN) at Ozarks Healthcare
All Degrees: Associate of Science in Nursing, Missouri State University-West Plains in 2017
“The West Plains campus gave me the resources I needed to help me study to reach my goals.”
For Merinda Crigler, her time as a student at Missouri State University-West Plains (MSU-WP) did not change her personality or core attributes, but it did help refine them. “I don’t necessarily feel like Missouri State-West Plains changed me as a person, but better shaped me into a nurse,” she said. “I already had a heart to take care of people and Missouri State-West Plains gave me the necessary tools to make that happen,”
With her new skills and degree, Merinda started her career at Ozarks Medical Center in West Plains. (Do you know what year she started her career at OMC?) “My greatest professional accomplishment is becoming an RN. Any day a patient feels like they’ve received good care from me is a good day,” Merinda said. “This hospital is filled with patients from my community. There’s nothing more satisfying than being able to take care of your own.”
“I met many people who had a great impact on my life and helped me get to where I am today.”
Merinda also explained that taking care of your own was a theme in the classroom as well. “I met many wonderful people while attending Missouri State-West Plains. Mrs. (Lindsey) Hill and Mrs. (Barbara) Caton stood out to me tremendously. They both took extra time out of their busy schedules to help me,” she said.
“Unfortunately, while attending school I went through several life-altering events. Mrs. Hill and Mrs. Caton were there for me and wanted to make sure I could still be successful. I’ll forever be grateful for them,” she said.
“My experience at MSU-WP was a great one.”
Merinda chose Missouri State-West Plains in part because it was affordable and close to home. She was also able to work full time while enrolled. For prospective students who may find juggling their responsibilities difficult, she encourages them to stick it out and ask for assistance. “If you’re struggling, always, always ask for help. Don’t do it alone,” she said. “Your instructors are there to help you. I promise you, they want to see you succeed.”