~ Sobia Moman
A trip to Guatemala where she did volunteer work as a youth, cemented Jennifer Schött’s love for helping people.
Schött went on to study at Athabasca University in Alberta and became a nurse in 2006.
After a few years working in a labour and delivery unit in Calgary, Schött was drawn in by Revelstoke and decided to make the city her home.
She recently became the charge nurse at Queen Victoria Hospital. Schött oversees all nursing staff and some accessory staff members in acute care and the emergency and operating rooms.
Working in the medical field during the pandemic was stressful and confusing, Schött said.
sThe hospital staff was constantly dealing with new and changing information as well as was responsible for making policies to reflect the available knowledge at the time.
“It was kind of like building a plane in the sky,” she said.
Since 2010, Schött has been helping run the Options for Sexual Health Clinic. After a year of working there, she noticed numerous young girls coming in and not knowing their body’s basic sexual functions.
She contacted the school board and inquired about the sexual education program. After finding out that the nurse who had most recently taught the course had moved and a new one was not appointed, she decided to take on the role.
“I think that’s vitally important in our community that kids get that knowledge about their bodies and how to make healthy choices. It’s something that will impact the rest of their lives, so I want them to have the best start.”
From there she developed the sexual education curriculum with teachers through independent studying and research. Through the ten years, she would go into schools and teach students in Grades 6 to 10 and provide them with answers to their questions.
Schött has passed on the reins to other nurses because of her demanding role as a charge nurse at the hospital.
Being in leadership was always in Schött’s future since one of her many roles includes being a mother. She wants to set a precedence for her children and young women to look up to.
“How a woman is a leader in a community might look different than how a male would do it,” Schött said.
Schött is very passionate about the Interior Health region and wants to see it thrive even more.
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