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We did it together: Nour’s Story

“I knew I wanted to be a nurse. I wanted to care for others. I wanted to have a professional job, a job that could support me and my family.”

Nour is a college graduate, a nurse, and a mother of five. When she first came to the Institute in 2012, she wouldn’t have believed it. “I always thought that being a nurse was impossible, like I could never do that. I was working with the International Institute, we’d talk about classes and school options: is it even possible? Where do I start?”

Before pursuing a degree at St. Paul College, Nour completed Nursing Assistant Training at the Institute, and started a job at a local nursing home. “As a nursing assistant, I feel like I gained the experience I really needed to make me a better nurse. I was able to work closely with the patients, and  learn things you don’t learn in books.”

“I hope my kids have learned to follow their dreams and never give up. To have confidence. I wanted to open the way for college, because in my family no one had ever gone to college or university.”

Nour’s journey wasn’t easy. “Being a young bride in an arranged marriage, it was a very hard way to live. I didn’t have the choices or options or belief in myself.” When she first came to the Institute, Nour and her children didn’t have a home. Through it all, her kids have always believed in her. “When my mom says she’s going to do something, she does it,” said her 13 year old son.

Nour would say she didn’t do it alone. “I’ve never really talked to my kids about my journey. It’s more like they’re living it with me. We did it together. When I had clinicals we’d have to get up at 4:30 in the morning so that I could drop them off at school and make it on time.”

“When I was growing up, there wasn’t enough access to health care. We didn’t have access to clinics or hospitals. My definite mission one day is to go to other countries to work with women and young girls in health awareness.”

Like so many of the New Americans who come to the International Institute, Nour has big dreams. Your support of the International Institute helps new Americans build fulfilling lives: from the job that pays for their first apartment, to the job that fulfills their dreams.

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