“I have wanted to be a nurse for as long as I can remember,” says Britney Stricker, daughter of Ronald Watson from Dallas and Rhonda Levy, and step dad, Wayne Levy. Rhonda and Wayne are both Devine graduates. Britny, a 2004 DHS graduate, grew up in the healthcare industry. Britny’s mother and grandmother, Beverly Roberts, worked in nursing homes all Britny’s life, and she says, “They are two of the most hard-working people I know.” She says they have always been her role models, and she is grateful for everything they have taught her.
Britny’s grandmother retired at the age of 73, and she had continued to work while she was fighting cancer because it was what she loved. But two years later, she passed away in February, 2021. Britny says, “I think about her every day.”
Volunteering as a young person at the nursing home and seeing her mother’s and grandmother’s passion for taking care of others, especially the elderly is what motivated Britny to become a nurse. Thus, following high school graduation, Britny went to community college to earn her prerequisites before heading off to nursing school two years later. By the age of 22, Britny was a registered nurse and began her own career as a pediatric nurse on the pediatric surgical floor at Methodist Children’s Hospital.
Following the birth of her first child, Britny decided to make a change in order to have more time with her family and new baby. So, she went to work at Pecan Valley Health & Rehabilitation for a short time. That stint was followed by another year and a half at Stone Oak Care Center where she had the awesome opportunity to work alongside her grandmother, mother, and grandfather, “I really appreciate and relish this time that I was able to spend time with them because it made some of my best memories.”
In 2013, Britny obtained the position as the Director of Health Services in her hometown of Devine. She felt blessed to have had a job where she could spend quality time with her children and be present for all their events. But after seven years, she realized she needed another change, so, while “I loved Devine and the people,” she says, she felt that something was missing. She missed working at the hospital and wanted to advance her career by earning her BSN so she could pursue becoming either a nurse practitioner or go into management within the hospital system.
Driven and determined, Britny achieved her BSN in 2020 and is now in her MSN of Leadership and Management program, hoping to have finished in another year. Interestingly, she has gone back to the Methodist hospital, “where it all started 12 years ago,” she says. Britny is looking forward to where her career will take her and adds, “I can’t imagine a profession more rewarding than taking care of others.”
Britny got married at the age of 21 to Charles Stricker of Natalia, a NHS 2001 graduate. Charles, who is a terminal manager for Matheson Tri Gas, and Britny have now been married for 14 years. Their first son, Charles III, was born in 2011, and two years later they had their second son, Cooper. Five years later, “I finally got my baby girl, Chloe,” Britny proudly says. She adds that she hopes to always be a role model to them and that they will follow her example of being a hard-working person, just as her mother and grandmother were, and thus be able to follow their dreams as she has done.
Another form of satisfaction for Britny is spending time with family and friends. On weekends, she and her husband often enjoy their backyard BBQs and frequently find themselves attending birthday parties, weddings, showers, etc.
They are also very involved in their church, Country Baptist Church. Charles is part of the sound booth ministry as well as the security team, and Britny works with the nursery and care team ministries. She says that she is at the church every Sunday and Wednesday when she is not at work. Having gone to church since she was a little girl, she humbly says, “My faith and my relationship with Jesus Christ are one of the most important things to me, as I know I could have not accomplished all the things mentioned without Him.” And, she adds, “To me, success is nothing unless you have a relationship with God. And only God knows where my journey goes from here, but I know with Him by my side, I have nothing to worry about.”
Britny is looking forward to being the kind of leader that other nurses can look up to and learn from, and she sincerely hopes to be the kind of role model her grandmother and mother are to her.