Educating Nurses in India
Educating Nurses in India
FARIDABAD, India—Konika lost her father to throat cancer five years ago. Although she is the oldest daughter in the family, she was just a teenager at the time and was unable to care for her dying father.

That's when she decided to become a nurse.
 
Konika
Konika, 21, was inspired to enroll at the
SOS Nursing School in Faridabad after
losing her father to throat cancer five
years ago.
Konika, 21, is one of 129 women enrolled at the SOS Nursing School in Faridabad. The school was founded in 1998 and has graduated 632 students since then. The school boasts a 100 percent rate for graduation and job placement, with its graduates working primarily at hospitals and for the government.
 
“I would like to gain clinical experience and pursue post-graduate work in obstetrics and gynecology,” said Konika, who is in her third and final year of the General Nursing and Midwifery program. “I would like to work for the Indian government or join a non-governmental organization to provide care and help to the needy people in Indian society.”

The SOS Nursing School was founded in part to provide girls at SOS Children’s Village Faridabad with a chance to integrate into Indian society through gainful employment. The SOS village in Faridabad, one of 32 SOS villages across India, was founded in 1985 and is currently home to 57 children.

Of the 632 women who have graduated from the nursing school since it opened, 144 have been women who grew up at the nearby SOS Village. Currently, there are 35 students at the nursing school from the SOS village.

Twenty-two-year-old Padma is one of them.

“Growing up at the SOS Village has played a vital role in shaping my career,” Padma said. “It has given me an opportunity to get certified in General Nursing and Midwifery from an esteemed nursing school.”


Padma (left) practices an oral procedure on a dummy.

Padma says that she visits her SOS mother and SOS brothers and sisters once a month, especially when she is on break from school. “The SOS Village is one of the things I cherish most in my life because I have a family that completes my life,” she said.

“The SOS Nursing School offers a broad-based education that prepares nurses at the basic and advanced levels to be able to function in a wide variety of healthcare settings,” said Janet Chaudhary, the principal of the school. “A nursing education increases a woman’s confidence and her ability to deal with problems in her life, with her family, her society and her nation,” she added.


Ms. Chaudhary says that she considers nursing to be the “noblest of all professions” and a “rewarding career.” She says that the younger generation of nurses is seeking employment outside India or with the government. Others find jobs at hospitals, nursing homes, research facilities and schools.

“My memorable moments at the SOS Nursing School revolve around seeing my students succeed and feeling that I played a part in their success,” Ms. Chaudhary said. “Each time a student becomes a key figure in nursing leadership, I take pride in the fact that I was part of that success.”