How CarDon’s “Achieve Your Degree” Program Propelled an Aspiring Nurse

Hannah Payne feels destined for the field of healthcare.

“Taking care of people has always been something I’ve enjoyed, and it just feels natural to me,” she said. “If I wasn’t in healthcare, I honestly have no clue what I would be doing!”

Hannah initially attended Ivy Tech part-time, completing pre-requisites for the nursing program. But she ended up taking time off from school after the birth of her second child. When she found out about CarDon’s “Achieve Your Degree” (AYD) program in 2018, Hannah gained the motivation and confidence to continue carving out her career path toward becoming a registered nurse.

“I had been wanting to go back so when I found out about the program, I felt like it was the perfect time and opportunity,” she said.

The AYD program is a statewide collaboration between Ivy Tech campuses and organizations like CarDon that offers free or low-cost tuition to employees through tuition reimbursement or financial support.

Hannah joined the CarDon family in 2012 as a certified nursing assistant (CNA) at University Heights.

“Working at University Heights has been such a blessing,” she said. “It really is like a second home. Being able to build relationships with the residents and just make them smile or laugh on a regular basis is a gift. After seven years of seeing them almost daily, it’s hard not to think of them as family.”

Hannah just recently got accepted to Ivy Tech’s Lawrence campus. She is grateful for the AYD program allowing her to continue her education and grow even closer to her second family at University Heights.