Building a Path for the Next Generation

23-year-old Post Anesthesia Care Unit nurse Skylar Gooch, RN, BSN may be young, but she is a skilled and valued member of the Boone Health team.

Skylar first began planning for her career in nursing during her junior year of high school.

“I was thinking about what I wanted to do and where I wanted to go to college, and I just really wanted to have a job that aligned with my faith. I liked the idea of being a nurse because it meant that I could serve and help others,” says Skylar.

Skylar decided to go to Mizzou after seeing how much her sister enjoyed the university.

“I’m from Wentzville, so I wasn’t going too far,” says Skylar.

While in her Mizzou nursing school program she did her clinicals at Boone Hospital Center.

Boone Health welcomes hundreds of student nurses each year for their clinicals. Clinical Education Supervisor Deanna Powers, BSN, RN, NE-BC oversees the program.

“Fundamentally students will have objective based clinical hours to match the theory they are learning in class. As they progress through school, their objectives change to hands-on experiences where they are caring for the patients and enhancing their knowledge, critical thinking, and skills. We offer all areas of the hospital for clinicals. I try to think outside of the box and may include a variety of experiences as well. Allowing students to be exposed to multiple areas, helps them not only understand the continuum of care and how each department works with another, but they get to see how nurses function in a variety of roles like inpatient, procedural, clinic, and home care,” says Deanna.

Skylar chose to spend most of her clinicals in postpartum and the ICU.

“I really liked the teamwork at Boone Hospital and how friendly and helpful everyone was, so I decided to apply after graduation,” says Skylar.

Skylar was hired as an ICU nurse following her graduation and became a part of Boone Health’s Nurse Residency Program.

The Nurse Residency Program supports new grad nurses during their entire first year of work through classroom learning and on-the-job assistance. The program focuses on leadership, patient outcomes, and developing in a professional role. It also gives new grads the opportunity to bond and share their experiences with other new graduate nurses.

“I was able to really get to know people and find community in nurse residency. There were even some nurses in it that I already knew from Mizzou nursing school,” says Skylar.

After working in the ICU for about a year, Skylar found she was interested in surgery patients.

“I shadowed the PACU and really liked it. I knew I would enjoy working with surgery patients. I transferred there, and I received great training and support,” says Skylar.

Skylar says she finds the work very fulfilling. “My favorite days are when I get to stay with the same patient post-op, pre-op, and then help them go home. I really feel like I get to know and help them,” says Skylar.

Skylar says she would recommend a career at Boone to any new nurses. “There is a wonderful atmosphere here. It’s like a big family. Everyone’s really supportive and helpful,” says Skylar.

When Skylar is not at work she enjoys reading, working out, and being outdoors. She also loves to travel and is always thinking of her next trip. “It’s just fun to have something planned and to look forward to,” says Skylar.

By Madison Loethen

For more information on a career in nursing at Boone Health, visit or call 573.815.3500.