Wadsworth graduate travels to NYC to fight COVID-19

BY LANEY CORELL

Many of us are asked to do our part to help prevent the spread of COVID-19. Former Wadsworth High School graduate and current cross country assistant coach, Michalla Gordon, took that a step further and traveled to New York City (NYC) to work on the front lines.

 Gordon has worked in hospitals for two years. After hearing about the much-needed help needed in NYC, she applied for a temporary crisis position in the Intensive Care Unit (ICU) of one of the hospitals. She felt that it was her duty to help, and she explains what it is like to be a frontline worker in the center of NYC through this pandemic. 

In college, Gordon earned her Bachelor of Science for Nursing with a minor in Psychology. After careful consideration and thought, Gordon felt that she must do her part and put her degree towards a worthy cause, in this case, to help those in need.

“There is no reason for people to die when I am an able body and willing to help,” Gordon expressed.

Michalla Gordon, a Wadsworth graduate, traveled to New York City to help hospitals during the pandemic. PHOTO COURTESY OF MICHALLA GORDON

Once early April came around, she decided to pack her bags and head to New York, where she received a job working in a hospital with COVID-19 patients. She has been there for six weeks and will continue to help until early June. Gordon is working with many patients affected with COVID on all different levels, specifically on ventilators. She claimed there were many challenges she faced when entering the frontlines. She had to revisit much of the information she learned in college and became familiar with the new hospital setting. Other adjustments she had to make outside the hospital were drastic. Such changes include completely changing her sleep schedule as well as mentally preparing herself every day to face her patients, who are in poor health.

 “One of the biggest challenges is working 13-hour shifts, and I sleep from around 10 am to 4 pm daily,” said Gordon. “That was a big adjustment physically for me.” 

She also explained that she does not have much free time to explore the city, but that has been a good thing for her. When she is not at the hospital, it leaves room for her to think and take in all the craziness that she has been around. Also, she begins thinking about home and all the loss she has seen in the past couple of weeks. 

Although working the front lines has been draining for many, she said that whenever she is struggling, she must remind herself why she went to NYC in the first place. Time has passed, however, and she claimed that things had begun to calm down compared to when she first arrived. She will be returning home early June as her contract with the hospital is up June 5.

She claims that although she has faced many physical and mental challenges, she is very fortunate to use her ideal health and skills to help those in need. 

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