BCBSND employee uses her work-life balance to pursue higher education

Anne Peterson and her husband, Jeff (November 2021).

At BCBSND, our is mission is to elevate well-being. For our employees, that not only includes the work-life balance they need to do their job, but also the balance they need to achieve their best life. For BCBSND’s Quality Management Coordinator RN Anne Peterson, her new work-life balance allowed the pursuit of her education as an RN. Find out below how Anne exemplifies our mission, vision and values by pursuing higher education.

School and working a full-time job? Impossible!
Anne received her Bachelor of Science in nursing in December 2021. She also received a certificate in Healthcare Leadership, Quality and Patient Safety. By completing her degree, Anne accomplished a long-time goal. She also deepened her knowledge as a professional nurse, displaying our value of Constant Innovation by seizing the opportunities provided by work-life balance at BCBSND.

She completed her degree while working full-time in her current role. You may think, “How could I ever work a full-time job and take college courses?” With some costs covered through BCBSND’s Scholarship America program and time to focus on what she wanted, Anne made it work.

“I found a good balance of credit levels that pushed me without being overly stressful. This allowed me to still have a life outside of work and school,” she shared.

A career in nursing
Before joining BCBSND, Anne held many unique positions in the medical field. She was an RN charge nurse at a skilled nursing facility, an assisted living homecare manager and a medical-surgical nurse. In her previous position, the hour commute each way combined with the rotating schedule of day and night shifts, made it difficult to attend her daughters’ school and personal activities. This and more created a longing for a better opportunity.

“I was used to driving to the hospital no matter what (I’m surprised my knuckles aren’t still white from driving in snowstorms) and feeling guilty if I found an opportunity to sneak a little time in to use the bathroom during my shift,” she shared.

She heard about BCBSND from a patient who had a family member who worked there. The patient encouraged her to apply, saying she would love it there.

“I was ready to transition to the next learning opportunity, actively job shadowing other areas at the time. I went home after my shift and began researching the company, applied, interviewed and the rest is history,” she shared.

A new chapter
Her new job came with new opportunities for her personal and professional life. The work schedule was consistent and manageable. She saved hours of commute time by telecommuting and had plenty of time to attend her daughters’ events.

“BCBSND offered me the opportunity to have work-life balance,” she explained. “Having a set schedule was a huge blessing and big culture shock to me.”

In addition to her education, Anne accomplished a personal goal of becoming a school board member in her community. She’s happy her work-life balance gives her time to serve her community in meaningful ways.

“I am in my second term now and even have time to volunteer through our Blue&You program,” she exclaimed.

Setting an example
Anne’s three daughters are a major part of her inspiration to pursue higher education and community work. She wanted to be a good role model for them. One of her favorite moments from her journey was walking across the graduation stage to receive her associate degree with her little girls in the audience.

What’s next?
Anne is now enrolled in graduate school. She already completed a graduate-level course last summer as an undergraduate and is working on six more credits for graduate certificates this spring semester.

“Now that I have completed my BSN, I have new educational and professional goals,” she shared. “Healthcare is an ever-changing profession, and one way I keep on top of the changes is by seeking to understand. Additional course work has broadened my knowledge base of evidenced-based practice, nursing theory and framework.”

Congratulations, Anne!
We commend Anne on achieving her Bachelor of Science in nursing and thank her for sharing her story and paving the way for others who may be considering their own higher education.

Anne with her daughters, Hailey, Grace and Megan.

Skiing Andes Tower Hills last winter – COVID-19 style: Grace, Hailey, Jeff, Megan and Anne (up front).