Powerball Winner Quits Job At Hospital -We Asked What Nurses Would Do
The first thing Mavis Wanczyk did when she found out she was the $759 million Powerball winner was quit her clerical job in the nursing department at Mercy Medical Center in Springfield, Mass.
The 53-year-old had been working in patient care for 32 years and took this incredible win as a chance to "sit back and relax." She opted for the lump sum payment which will be a total of $336 million after taxes.
We wanted to find out what nurses would do with their lottery winnings. Turns out, there have been several nurse lottery winners.
Past Nurse Winners
Earlier this year, a Virginia nurse named Evelyn Burner won $1 million in the state’s 20X the Money game. When asked what she would do with the winnings, she said, “I’ll still go to work, still help people.”
Last year, a New Jersey nurse won a Cash4Life drawing that awarded her $1000 every day for the rest of her life. She was so excited that she had to call a fellow nurse to make sure she wasn’t having a heart attack. However, when asked whether she would stop working, she said, “I thought about calling out rich, but I know that a lot of people depend on me, so I went to work.”
Four years ago, a Michigan nurse who won $4 million on a gas station scratch ticket found herself in a similar situation. Though her boss was worried she would retire, the anonymous nurse said she would be keeping her job, but would scale back to a 40-hour work week for the first time in years.
“I’ve been a nurse for 28 years and I’ve always worked a lot of overtime at more than one job. We’ve been really short staffed lately, so when I told my boss she was afraid that I was going to retire. I told her that I am not planning to retire, but I am cutting my hours back. I’m not sure I’ve ever worked just a 40-hour week, so working just 40 hours at one job will feel like retirement to me!”
What Would You Do?
We know that what you would do as opposed to what you actually do can be two different things. But it’s definitely a fun exercise. So we asked a few nurses what they would do with $759 million. Here’s what they said.
Sophia Khawly, a traveling nurse practitioner said:
“To be honest, I am not sure $759 million would make a big difference in my life. I love what I do so I would continue to be a traveling nurse practitioner. With the money, I would donate to my non-profit in Haiti, called Hope for Haiti’s Children, which would provide free education to children in Haiti. I would also share a lump sum of money with my closest family and friends. And lastly, I would use the money to pay for my Doctoral Degree.”
Brittany Hamstra, a pediatric oncology nurse said:
“The first thing I would love to do when I have some serious financial stability would be travel blogging. I want to travel the world and share my experiences like my favorite Instagram accounts @thebucketlistfamily and @worldwanderlust. Meanwhile, I would like to go back to school for my Masters or DNP part-time, online while I travel. When I’m ready to settle again I imagine myself somewhere on the West Coast beaches, surfing and working in a hospital still. Additionally, I would make sure my family is comfortable and also donate a large sum to St. Jude Cancer Research.”
And Leah Helmbrecht, an operating room nurse and blogger said:
“I bought a powerball ticket and within seconds my dreams were crushed (since I wasn’t a winner). I had plans of quitting my job and traveling internationally for fun learning about different cultures and ways people live. There are so many places internationally that I want to see and that would have been a great opportunity to do that. I have a chronic autoimmune disease, so I would donate a bunch to research for a cure. There are a select number of friends I would give money to so they wouldn’t have to work again. I would definitely invest a lot in the stock market and place a lump in savings so I didn’t lose it all and end up broke again, as some people who have won the lottery have done.”
So what would you do? Would you quit your nursing job if you won the lottery?
Nurse.org's Popular Articles and Resources
Non-Bedside Nursing Jobs
Looking for a change beyond the bedside? Check out our list of the top non-bedside nursing careers
15 Highest Paying Nursing Jobs in 2021
You know all nursing jobs aren’t created (or paid!) equally, but do you know which nurses are making the most money in 2020?
2021's Best Nursing Schools
We've looked at programs nationwide and determined these are our top schools
Start your Career Quiz
Ready to take your career to the next level? Find out what your next step could be.