by Bobby Anderson, Staff Writer
Never much of a planner, things have always just seemed to fall into place for Landin Boler, RN, BSN, CCRN, CEN.
Growing in Glenpool, just south of Tulsa in Tulsa County, you could always find him on a football or baseball field or running on a track.
But just because he isn’t one to plan out every detail of his life doesn’t mean there’s no drive.
There’s plenty there and more for Integris Canadian Valley Hospital’s reigning nurse of the year.
“I’m pretty happy where I’m at right now,” he says. “I always feel like you should never be stagnant in what you do. That’s why I’ve tried to work hard in getting dual certified in the ER and ICU. I’m always striving to learn something new.”
“Everybody should have a pipe dream and little by little chip away at it.”
Less than five years out of nursing school, Boler’s practice is in high gear – even if it didn’t exactly start out that way.
“I got as much education paid for as I could. To be honest with you, I went there mainly to play baseball,” Boler said of attending St. Gregory’s University on a baseball scholarship. “I knew I wasn’t going to go pro but at the time you don’t think of things like that.”
But Biology did interest him, so he loaded up on science coursework and finished with a bachelor’s degree of natural science.
With his playing days behind him and not much of a professional future in front of him Boler opted for nursing.
He applied to a bunch of different schools and made it on the wait list for the University of Oklahoma’s Accelerated BSN Program.
He got the call with an invitation to join the next class a week before it was to start.
Living in Tulsa and a spot in the program open in Duncan, Boler threw together what little he had into his truck and “moved everything to Duncan as fast as I could.”
There he found a 1940s post-WW2 GI house to bunk down in for the next 14 months.
“The roof literally caved in on me,” Boler remembers. “It just fell in one day.”
It didn’t matter that much. He spent the majority of his time either in class at Cameron University or in clinicals at Duncan Regional Hospital.
Boler graduated from the University of Oklahoma’s Accelerated BSN program in March 2013.
After working at St. John’s in Tulsa his first year after graduation, Boler moved down to the OKC metro to accept a job at Integris Canadian Valley Hospital.
At 26, he finally figured out what he wanted to do.
“I just kind of found my stride,” said Boler. “I like the people I work with. I like how big the hospital is. I like that I can go into any unit and know anybody.”
Boler works now in the ICU at Integris Canadian Valley but still floats down to the ER.
He likes the fact he can call ICVH Rex Van Meter, MHA, by his first name walking down the hall. He likes that just about everyone knows him.
“You don’t get that at bigger hospitals,” Boler said.
And he also likes intensive care and the responsibility that it comes with.
“I like how in-depth it gets and eventually I’m trying to get back into school,” Boler said.
Boler is seriously thinking about becoming a certified registered nurse anesthetist. He has applications out to a few schools, all of which prefer ICU experience.
“There’s more autonomy,” Boler said of heading down the CRNA path. “There’s more case studies. I feel like I would see a broader range. I like procedures and I’m a PICC line nurse here.”
“It’s definitely not about the money.”
School is common theme in the Boler household. His nurse wife just graduated as a neonatal nurse practitioner and works at Mercy.
“I think it would be neat to do orthopedics maybe leg blocks or epidurals. Maybe even I can come full circle with my sports background,” he said of his possible CRNA future.
No matter what, big things are still ahead for Boler.
The topic of children has been a big one in the Boler household of late.
He’s turning 30 this December.
And he loves having a partner to help guide his path.
“I always say marry somebody that’s better than you in every way – and she is,” said Boler, who celebrated his third anniversary this past May. “She’s a better person than me and she’s a better nurse than me. What’s good is we’re on complete opposite spectrums.”
“She only deals with neonates and I deal with adults and geriatrics. It’s completely different worlds.”
And both seem to have the drive to accomplish whatever they want in nursing.