Chief Nursing Executive Jane Englebright is one of the 80,000 HCA-affiliated nurses who have experienced firsthand the fulfillment that nursing brings…and the challenges, too. And if the 37-year nursing veteran had to do it over again, she wouldn’t change a thing about this career path.

Englebright has served in a variety of roles: critical care, rehabilitation, educator, and various leadership positions, including service as HCA’s inaugural patient safety officer. Regardless of her position title, Dr. Englebright has helped lead improvements in patient care and nursing practice throughout her career.

We sat down with the national nursing leader to learn more about what she considers the most rewarding part of her career, her words of wisdom for the next generation and what she’d like to say to nurses at HCA (and everywhere!), as we near the end of this National Nurses Week.

Name: Jane Englebright, PhD

Job: Senior Vice President and Chief Nurse Executive at HCA

Hometown: Bowling Green, Ky.

Years at HCA: 24

Life before HCA: Nurse leader in various hospital settings in Texas and Kentucky

When or how did you decide on this profession? When I started college, I intended to be a special education teacher. After about a year, I decided I wanted to work with special needs children as a nurse. My mother, however, will tell you that I always wanted to be a nurse.

What does the future look like for nursing? The future is very exciting for the nursing profession. We now have clear ways of demonstrating our value to multiple stakeholders. Our patients have always recognized our value, and nurses have been voted the most trusted profession in a Gallup poll for 14 of the last 15 years! But, we have not had the metrics to objectively demonstrate our value in a quantifiable way. Now, we have nurse-sensitive measures of quality, safety, and patient experience that more clearly demonstrate the difference nurses make to overall operations

Why do you think nurses have been consistently been named the most trusted profession? Nurses interact with patients and families at their most vulnerable times, and engage with them on a very personal level. Nurses know how to listen with empathy and also how to translate complicated concepts and medical terms into bite-sized pieces of information which patients and families can more easily understand.

What words of wisdom would you share with the next generation of nurses? You have entered a profession that will enrich your life. Embrace it, engage with it, and the benefits will multiply. Nursing is so much more than just a job.

What advice would you give to veteran nurses? Welcome new nurses to the profession and be open to the insights and approaches they bring to the table. Our new nurses are the best-prepared in our history. They are going to advance the profession. Help them get a good start!

Who’s your favorite person to follow on social media? My granddaughter!

What’s your go-to app on your phone? WAZE. I started using it when I travel, but the traffic in Nashville has gotten so bad, I use it every day now!

Best piece of advice you’ve received: The chair you are sitting in should always feel a little too big, from my dad.

What’s one quality every nurse should have? Curiosity.

Best way to decompress: Go for a walk outdoors.

What’s the challenging part about being a nurse? Balancing multiple priorities.

What’s the best part about being a nurse? Being invited into the most intimate moments of patients’ lives.

What’s the most rewarding part of your career? Seeing advancements in patient care adopted across HCA and knowing we are positively impacting healthcare practices for the world.

What book, TV show or podcast do you love right now, and why? I am enjoying Brené Brown right now. I heard her speak at American Organization of Nurse Executives (AONE) this year and her message of Rising Strong really resonates with me.

Is there a patient you still think about? Many! I have learned so many valuable lessons from patients through the years. I still think of individual patients on a regular basis.

What is your message to HCA nurses and nurses everywhere this week? Thank you for the important work that you do every day. Thank you for choosing HCA. Thank you for being a part of this amazing community of HCA nursing. Together, we are doing amazing things.

Dr. Jane Englebright is the senior vice president and chief nursing executive at HCA Healthcare, headquartered in Nashville, Tenn. She serves alongside more than 81,000 HCA-affiliated nurses in 20 U.S. states and in the U.K.