At the heart of Frontier Nursing University is a talented and diverse community of students, alumni, faculty, staff, Couriers and preceptors. Spotlight blogs feature members of our FNU community that are focused on the mission of educating nurse-midwives and nurse practitioners to deliver quality health care to underserved and rural populations.
Frontier Nursing University (FNU) alumni Damara Jenkins (Class 48) first stumbled upon nurse-midwifery after contemplating medical school. She quickly discovered that midwifery fit her personal philosophy, and from that point on she wanted to pursue a career as a Certified Nurse-Midwife.
When looking for the right school, Damara was first drawn to Frontier’s distance education program. As a working mother raising four children, the flexibility offered by FNU was an attractive option. She also had family ties that made FNU appealing. Damara’s grandfather was a surgeon who had volunteered with the Frontier Nursing Service.
Most importantly, Damara felt that her personal passion and goals closely aligned with Frontier’s long-standing mission to serve rural and underserved communities.
“My goal was not just to produce more nurse-midwives in Kentucky, but also to focus on serving women in my local community,” said Damara.
She first practiced as a CNM in July 2011 at Woman Care in Indiana. Many of her patients traveled from Louisville, Ky., to see her because they couldn’t find nurse-midwives with hospital privileges in the Louisville area. Over time, that changed. In November 2014, Damara accepted a position in the Division of Midwifery at the University of Louisville, Center for Women and Infants.
In this role, Damara serves women from Louisville and surrounding areas with diverse economic and educational backgrounds. The Center recently hired two additional nurse-midwives to support the demand for the midwifery model of care.
“One of the nice things about working in the hospital setting is that I have the opportunity to teach not only nurse-midwives or nurse practitioner students, but also medical students,” said Damara.
According to Damara, she is pleased to see a steady increase of deliveries since arriving to the Center.
Damara is not only carrying out the Frontier mission by providing midwifery care through her regular job duties, but she is also serving as a preceptor for FNU nurse-midwifery students. In addition, she is involved in a local group that is trying to establish a birth center in Louisville. Being a part of the “Friends of the Birth Center” group is a first step to increasing birthing options for women in the area.
“I love my job,” said Damara. “Yes, it’s difficult and you have to have the flexibility to change your plans at any given moment, but it is so rewarding being in a position to witness women’s strength. It’s also amazing just being a part of the midwifery community and connecting with people from all over the world as we support and learn from one another.”
Visit this link to see Damara featured in a news segment on WDRB 41 in Louisville.
Visit this link to see Damara featured on WHAS 11 Great Day Live!