Meet Beth Hawkes: A Nurse's Nurse

Brenda Winters

Beth Hawkes is a career advice columnist, writer, speaker, educator and subject matter expert with a long and successful career in acute care. She blogs about professional development and all things nursing at

As a Staff Development Educator, Beth shares some great insights with us regarding the nursing industry and career advice.

What question do you get the most from current and aspiring nurses?

The question I get most often is “How can I get a job in a hospital with little or no experience?”  Many nursing students don’t realize how competitive the market is for new grads. They don’t realize that their resumes must stand out in order to land interviews, and have not been taught those skills. With my background as a nurse manager, I provide a lot of helpful career articles on my blog.

Who are your biggest influences? Who do you admire most? Who or what inspired you to do what you're doing now?

As a nurse entrepreneur, I admire Laura Gasparis because she’s a successful nurse, business owner, and nurse advocate. I attended one of her ICU Review courses when I was just starting out. She’s an example of how nurses can parlay their skills into  successful businesses.

As a Staff Development Educator, what are some memorable encounters with new nurses or anecdotes that you can share with us?

I love mentoring new nurses. The first year as a nurse is challenging, and they need encouragement and support to succeed. I remember Krystal, who was crying one day in the supply room. She inspired me to write Nursing’s Dirty Little Secret. Krystal is now a competent nurse practicing in the Emergency Department.

In your career, what would you have done differently if you knew then what you know now?

I love helping nurses through my career advice column as “Ask Nurse Beth” at, and my blog, I would have started ventures such as these earlier on if I’d realized the many possibilities open to me as a nurse.

What do you want your legacy to be? How do you want to be remembered?

The lyrics from a popular song “I am strong when I am on your shoulders, you raised me up to be more than I can be” say it all. That I helped someone’s when he or she needed it.

What are you most proud of from your entire career?

I am proud of currently working and volunteering for several national nursing professional organizations, such as the ANA, ANCC, ANPD and AMSN, in different capacities. I am honored and grateful to have the chance to influence nursing practice and the profession.

As a “nurse’s nurse”, what advice do you have for new nurses?

Never stop learning. Make evidence-based practice the goal where you practice.

Lift each other up, and help new nurses.

How do you want to be remembered? What should your career in nursing look like? Here are 7 Important Elements of An Inspiring Nursing Career.

Next Up: Nurse Spotlight: Nacole Riccaboni

Brenda Winters


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