Future nurse changing his future at West Side Learning Center

During the COVID-19 pandemic, Jeffery Haggins was inspired to make a career change.

“I witnessed compassion every day at the hospital where I work as a counselor,” said Jeffrey, a student at Malcolm X College’s West Side Learning Center.

His one requirement? Jeffery needed a career that would allow him to continue helping others.

Today, he’s on his way to earning his Basic Nursing Assistant (BNA) certification, with plans to earn an associate and bachelor’s degree in nursing.

“I’ve been in the healthcare field for ten years, but this is still definitely a career change for me,” he said. “My next step is to work as a patient care tech, which requires another certification that is only eight weeks long,” added Jeffrey, who has his sights set on an associate degree in nursing at Malcolm X College after that.

Because Jeffrey served in the Army for six years, his path to a two-year degree is covered by his military benefits.

A native of Chicago’s West Side, Jeffery appreciates the convenience of Malcolm X College’s West Side Learning Center satellite location, and he enjoys learning from his instructors.

“One of my instructors is a model of compassion, and I’m impressed with that. I plan to take what I learn from her and apply it to the work of being a good nurse,” he said.

Jeffrey graduated from Richard T. Crane Medical Prep High School in 2003 and hopes to be working as a nurse by 2026.

“I plan to be an example of success for other young men and want to change mindsets about being male and a nurse,” he said.

Jeffery hopes his hard work will help expand people’s views of men in nursing, and he encourages other men who want to be nurses to follow their dreams.

“We have the opportunity to show compassion and to give back to the community. We can be the positive change in healthcare,” he said.