EU Alumni Perspective: Jennifer Cochran
Name: Jennifer Cochran
Graduation Year: 2019
Major: Masters of Organizational Leadership
Current Position: Emergent Care Education Manager, CoxHealth Emergency Departments and Urgent Care Clinics (Springfield)
City and State: Springfield, MO
Tell us about your career and what you do now.
I have been a nurse in the Emergency Department at CoxHealth for 23 years. Just prior to graduating with my MOL degree, I accepted a position that has me leading a team to conceptualize and deliver clinical staff education for the Springfield Emergency Departments and regional Urgent Care Clinics. Our aim is to provide quality educational content that prepares our clinical staff to work competently and confidently at the bedside. We focus heavily on developing our new graduate nurse residents, as well as target topical and annual credentialing for all clinical staff.
What is your favorite memory from Evangel?
By far and away, my time in residency with my cohort. We became fast friends, and eventually more like family. Building those relationships was an unexpected blessing. I am so thankful the Lord called each of us to EU at that very time.
How did Evangel help you identify/develop your calling?
The faculty were so keyed in and committed to guide each of us as we navigated some rather significant career decisions. For me personally, Drs. Fulks, Lehnert, and Praschan were instrumental in providing incredible clarity as I sought wholeheartedly to discern the Lord’s will for my career’s next steps. The impassioned insight they provided was truly an answered prayer. That’s the difference at Evangel. The faculty invest deeply into their students’ desire to hone and direct their strengths toward answering a Spirit-led calling on their lives. I left Evangel feeling confident and in tune with how my gifts could be used to reach and develop others for God’s glory.
How did your experience at Evangel prepare you for life after graduation?
Because of my education, I have so many fundamental leader tools at my disposal as I work to develop a strong team and devise sound strategic objectives. I also have much insight into the softer side of leadership—emotional intelligence, an imperative but often overlooked aspect of modern day leadership. This is especially true when working with younger generations, which is our main “audience.” My experience at EU assured I am able to relate to people from a place of empathy. This ethos has become a foundation for our team. We aim to eliminate any barrier to education by allowing for vulnerability without judgement. This is essential for engagement, buy-in, and trust.
What advice would you give a current student preparing for the workforce?
First and foremost, seek the Lord as you ponder your options. Look to His guidance and pray for discernment. We don’t have to make these decisions alone! Second, look for an opportunity to use your unique gifts and strengths; an environment where they will be fostered and utilized under strong leadership. Finally, stay true to who you are. Don’t allow your job to define you, but rather augment your walk with God.
What would you look for if you were in a position to hire new graduates from Evangel?
Energy, passion, and humility.