When Juanita began attending Parkland College full-time, it was her first time away from her home in Danville, Illinois. She said “attending Parkland was truly a time of personal growth and maturity for me. I appreciated the care and support by the instructors – this encouraged me to succeed.” She completed her degree in Nursing from Parkland in 1972 and in 1975 she earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Nursing from St. Xavier University, Chicago, Illinois, where she was inducted into the Sigma Theta Tau, International Honor Society of Nursing.
After working in Billings Hospital in Chicago, Illinois, Juanita returned to east central Illinois. After a year as a staff RN on the Surgical Floor of Mercy Hospital, she started her 28-year career as a staff RN for McKinley Health Center at the University of Illinois in 1978, retiring in 2006.
In 1984, Juanita completed the AMEDD (Army Medical Department of the U.S. Army) Officer Basic Course at Fort Sam in Houston, Texas, and went on to complete in that same year the Junior Officer Leadership Training Phase II. In 1986, she completed the U.S. Army’s Officer Advance Course Phase I.
Juanita volunteered for the Parish Nurse program serving from 2001 to 2006 at the Center of Hope Church and from 2005 to 2008 at the Glory Center International Church both in Champaign. And she was inducted into The American National Red Cross in 1975.
Juanita’s most memorable moment “…was when I had the opportunity to follow my assigned Obstetrics patient into the labor room to witness the birth of a live, healthy baby boy! Unforgettable – even though it was early in the morning at Carle Hospital!”