“You can make a fresh start whenever you want. Anytime you feel that you are heading for a wall or a dead-end, all you have to do is turn and start walking.”
Dimitra turned over a new leaf after returning from maternity leave, transitioning from interior design to a career as a registered nurse. She lives in Thessaloniki, Northern Greece with her seven-year-old son. Here’s her story:
2016 B.C. (Before Coursera)
For several years I had a career in kitchen design that I loved, and it provided a great salary and a good life for my family. However, when I left for maternity leave, I lost my job when the showroom I was working for shut down. After 11 months of unemployment, I found a job in retail selling women’s accessories, but that was a far cry from what I used to do.
When this happened, Greece was undergoing a financial crisis, and I was earning 1/4th of my previous salary working in retail. I was employed under undesirable conditions with poor management. Retail and sales are a high-stress combination — it just wasn’t for me. Once I quit, I had to take some time to figure out what I wanted to do moving forward. I’m so glad that I did!
A New Leaf
During that time, I started taking courses on Coursera for fun. Anything that triggered my curiosity was fair game. That’s when I discovered that I had an interest in the health sector.
Take a look at Dimitra’s course list:
- Epidemics, Pandemics and Outbreaks by the University of Pittsburgh
- Introduction to Global Health by the University of Copenhagen
- Introduction to Population Health by the University of Manchester
My courses on Coursera helped me start a new path in my life. At the end of last year, I graduated as a Nursing Assistant with excellence from the University of Patras in Pharmacy. I have applied for nursing positions at four hospitals in Thessaloniki, and most likely I’ll be starting next year at Ippokrateio Hospital, one of the largest hospitals in Northern Greece. I can’t wait to begin practicing!
“I’m very happy with the 180 degree turn my life has taken. Coursera helped me discover what I like to do in life besides design and gave me the push I needed to start over.”
A picture of Dimitra’s time in nursing school, illustrated by her son:
“Taking courses on Coursera helped me realize that it’s never too late to start something new. Never settle for the wrong job and unhappiness. If I can do it, you can do it too.”