Careers in Aging Caregiver Profile
Blenda Carter, RN, Resident Administrator at Middleburg Nursing and Rehabilitation Center
I became a certified nursing assistant (CNA)) in 2010, inspired by my mother who took a CNA express course and became certified. A few years later, my sister came home from school and toldme she was going to go to college to become a nurse. Although she was younger than me, I believed her and asked how she would pay for college. She told me the school guidance counselor said funds were available to allow people to go to school.
My sister said to me, “you care about people; why don’t you become a nurse?”
My reply was that I never knew I could. I decided to go to the local community college and started down a path that changed my entire life trajectory.
I worked in home health care as a CNA, and once I became an LPN, I worked in long-term care. I was proud of myself and thankful that my sister had inspired me to become a nurse. One day, my sister and I were talking, and she said she was going to go back to school and become a Registered Nurse. I challenged her to see who could become an RN first, and the race was on. In 2013, I became a Registered Nurse.
I have worked in home health and the hospital, but my heart was always in long-term care because I feel I can make a difference. Many residents in long-term care facilities don’t have a family, and some are there because they were dealt an intricate hand in life, but no matter the reason, they deserve to be treated with love and respect; they deserve a clean, safe haven to call home. We are their family. I am my brother’s keeper, so I have made it my life’s mission to care for those who cannot care for themselves.
I have worked in long-term care as a floor nurse, unit manager, ADON, and the Director of Nursing. Each position has inspired me to do more and to be more, and I am grateful. When you genuinely care about people, it becomes infectious to the people around you. I strive daily to make a difference, which has made a difference for my team. My motto is “We are people taking care of people.” I never want to forget that.
While employed as the Director of Nursing at a facility in my hometown, I was surprised to learn that the interim administrator had also held my current position. I was fascinated and would often stop by her office and talk to her about the nursing department and the operations. It was then that I decided that I would one day become an administrator.
Today, I am blessed to be a Resident Administrator at Middleburg Nursing and Rehabilitation Center under Erica Henderson, NHA, who has been an administrator for over 7 years. Erica is intelligent, compassionate, and caring, and I am thankful to be able to learn from the best.
We need more people who are passionate about caring for others to join us in providing excellent care. If you genuinely love people, this is your career path. We can teach you the skills if you have the heart.