After losing her husband, SRTC nursing student graduates during pandemic

Updated: Dec. 14, 2020 at 6:11 PM EST
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THOMASVILLE, Ga. (WALB) - A former student at Southern Regional Technical College in Thomasville just completed the nursing program.

She said her late husband is the true inspiration behind her success.

In 2014, Nan Roger’s husband was diagnosed with cancer.

Spending months in treatment centers and hospitals, Rogers realized a new passion.

“I had a passion for the medical field. I decided one day that this was what I wanted to do,” said Rogers.

Rogers’ husband encouraged her to quit her accounting job to pursue nursing.

Her husband died in March 2019, and she said after his passing, she knew she had to complete what she started.

“Even though I lost my husband physically on this earth, he’s the one that kept me going. If there’s one thing he taught me, it’s you have to keep living and keep on moving forward.”

Nan Rogers, Former Nursing Student
Nan Rogers, Former Nursing Student(Source: WALB)

It was a challenging time after losing her husband and going straight into navigating a pandemic as a student.

Rogers’ instructors said she was always an inspiration to others.

“She persevered. Nan is one of those that is a leader. She works hard. She goes above whatever is asked of her,” said Terry Harper, Rogers’ instructor.

“It’s an emotional experience for us as well. You’re there at the beginning, you’re there at the end. You see their struggles, you get to kind of make that connection with them, and hopefully one day, they’ll be the ones taking care of you,” said Athalena Benton, another of Rogers’ instructor.

As her instructors pushed her to be the very best, Rogers said one quote kept her going.

It began the night she came home after her husband passed away.

“My best friend asked me, ‘are you going to start back to nursing school or are you going to quit?’ And I looked at her with just an evil look and I said ‘I don’t quit,’” Rogers said.

Terry Harper, Nursing Instructor
Terry Harper, Nursing Instructor(Source: WALB)
Athalena Benton, Nursing Instructor
Athalena Benton, Nursing Instructor(Source: WALB)

To this day, her whiteboard has those three words written on them, and she looks at them every day.

Rogers got a limo for her nursing drive-thru graduation ceremony with her core group of friends riding with her during the special moment.

She said she’s had angels looking out for her through every struggle.

“I would like to be that angel to a future patient,” said Rogers.

After being one of the families battling cancer, Rogers wants to help other cancer patients and go into oncology.

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