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Where Are They Now? Meet Emily Makhanu, BSN

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November 02, 2022

Originally from Kenya, Emily moved to the U.S. in 2019 with Avant Healthcare Professionals to advance her professional career and provide a better life for her family. Today, Emily and her children are enjoying life in Maine and living their American Dream. 

Why did you join Avant?

I chose Avant Healthcare Professionals because I had heard good reports about them. One of my Kenyan colleagues was among the first nurses to be recruited by Avant, and he told me that Avant Healthcare Professionals is a genuine company with a strong nurse support program

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How was your Avant experience?

It took me four months to go through the study program preparing for the NCLEX-RN (National Council Licensure Exam for Registered Nurses). I did my exams in India because there was no exam center in Africa. Avant Healthcare Professionals paid for my round-trip ticket to India and Kenya. After passing the NCLEX, Avant Healthcare Professionals applied and paid for my green card. They also filed the green card application for my family members, while I shouldered the fees for my family. When the time came for me to go to the U.S., Avant paid for my air ticket to the USA while I took care of my family’s air tickets.  

Arriving in the USA, I started a 6-week program that included clinical and cultural tutorials. This is very important because it gives you a baseline for living and working in the USA comfortably without struggling. After graduating from Avant University, I worked at my assigned U.S. facility.  

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Where were you placed and why did you convert to the hospital's full-time staff?

With the help and close guidance of the Avant Field Manager, I finished my contract and converted into a full-time staff at my assigned facility. Working there helped me grow professionally and academically. I got excellent support from my nurse manager and the clinical education team and did my BSN course & Oncology training. I also earned recognition as one of the quality nurses on my unit. I was also lucky to work with my daughter on the same unit and got great support from the staff and the management.  

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My daughter worked hard and got a sunshine award while working as a CAN (Certified Nurse Assistant). She also went to Nursing school and graduated this year as a registered nurse. Being young, she wanted adventure and to see other parts of the USA, so she asked me if we could move to another state. I had to listen because she had worked so hard and made me proud, and her brother, who is so much into soccer.

Any advice to other nurses thinking about coming to the U.S. to pursue their American dream?

I want to encourage my fellow Kenyan nurses to take the right path. I have seen nurses who come here and do not go through the transition program, and they struggle. Some hospitals reject nurses who do not perform to the standards as expected, but with Avant, you receive the support you need to polish your weakness to be a quality and evidence-based practice nurse. 

My growth as a nurse and achievement of my American dream has been because of the incredible support I received from Avant since I stepped into the USA. I am currently doing my MSN program and can’t wait to see myself as a Nurse Practitioner soon.  


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