When Angela Kuremsky was growing up, she knew exactly what she wanted from her career. Hearing stories about nursing from her aunt and cousin, and about her father’s time on the rescue squad inspired her to take a shot at helping others herself.
“I wanted to provide care to the community,” she says. “That’s still my driving force, every day.”
In high school, she hoped for a mentorship with the labor and delivery department at Augusta Health, but when those slots were full, she opted for the Emergency Department instead. It was a decision that set her direction. “The constant change and the very fast pace really appealed to me,” she says. “I’ve never wanted to do anything else since.”
Inspired, she became an EMT, and joined Augusta Health just out of high school, nine years ago. After getting her nursing degree, she took on additional duties as a nurse educator.
Although there’s no such thing as a typical day in the ED, Kuremsky says she sees everything from stubbed toes and toothaches to patients who need critical care or have life-threatening injuries. She might tend to a newborn one moment, and then rush to the side of an elderly adult in distress the next. In the time in between, she works with students who come to the ED for training from a wide variety of different medical education programs throughout the valley. It’s not unusual to see students with her on most of the days she works, soaking up the formidable knowledge she’s gained after nearly a decade at Augusta Health.
When not at Augusta Health, she works on the Staunton-Augusta Rescue Squad as an EMT. She jokes that she and her husband like to travel, but given her days and nights of responding to emergencies, trips tend to be in short supply these days.
Recently, she was named 2016 Nurse with Outstanding Contribution to EMS, given by the Central Shenandoah Emergency Medical Services Council. “I want to continue to help in whatever way I can,” she says. “That might mean getting more certifications or volunteering or teaching more students. Everything I do helps me take better care of our patients and our community.”