Abbey Gunderson

Abbey Gunderson, RN, BSN

I definitely feel like I’m going to be successfully prepared for my career as a nurse practitioner as I’m getting tons of research-based education along with thousands of clinical hours. I can’t imagine any other program offering more than FGCU.

Abbey Gunderson

When Abbey Gunderson was in high school, her grandmother ended up in the hospital. And Abbey noticed something interesting—it was the nurses who seemed most dialed in to the patients and their families providing empathetic, compassionate care.

She had always known she wanted a job that would make a difference in peoples’ lives, but it wasn’t until that instance that she realized the job was nursing. Her ambition took off from there. While still in high school, she began interning with experienced nurses in the field.

Abbey earned her BSN at the University of Florida in Gainesville. With her grades, skills and dedication she could have gone anywhere for her doctorate of nursing, however, she chose Marieb College at FGCU because it offers a hybrid program in Southwest Florida.

“We are the beneficiaries of a strong network of professors and other students who offer the depth of support you need when pursuing a degree this intensive. FGCU’s resources and lab are phenomenal. Since it’s a newer program, everything is state of the art,” she elaborates. “Also, you’re on campus every week, meeting with professors and studying with other nursing students. That kind of interaction fuels your development and you can’t find that in fully online programs.”

Once Abbey graduates and becomes a doctor of nursing practice (DNP or nurse practitioner), she could have her own family practice, but she envisions herself collaborating alongside a physician in a family practice with a focus on preventative and primary care. Meanwhile, she’s working full-time as an RN as she studies to become a nurse practitioner. And, no doubt, she’s inspiring others to follow in her footsteps, just as those RNs inspired her years ago.

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