April 11, 2024

Nursing alum embraces wellness and explores healing through nursing and yoga

Madeline Hermann, BHSc'14, BN'24 tells us how she's using her education and passion for yoga to promote wellness and self-care in the community
Madeline plays a set of singing bowls
Madeline Hermann, BHSc'14, BN'24

Madeline Hermann is a recent alumna of the University of Calgary's Faculty of Nursing who finished the program in December 2023. She currently works at the Peter Lougheed Centre Coronary Care Unit (CCU) as a new graduate nurse.  

“I currently work at the PLC U48 CCU. I completed my Term 8 practicum on this unit and was hired into a Temporary Graduate Nurse 0.9 FTE line after finishing my Term 8 practicum,” she says. 

Hermann is also an experienced yoga teacher combining western and eastern philosophy to her teachings. Madeline has taught for a decade both locally and internally. She currently teaches at Hot Shop Hot Yoga & Spin studios around the city.  

“I started yoga when I was 15. I was an athlete playing competitive ringette, soccer, and basketball and my body was very sore and broken from intense training. Yoga first was a physical practice and soon became a mental, emotional, and spiritual practice. My yoga mat became a sacred space for healing for myself.”

She completed her first 200 YTT in 2015 and her 300 YTT in 2018 with Nora Maskey and Alice Hong of the Inspired Yoga Institute in Calgary. She has also completed various other trainings in aerial yoga, kids yoga, teen yoga, Yoga Thrive for Cancer patients, barre, spin, various other fitness modalities.

On April 19, she will be leading a yoga and sound meditation for WellNurse, an interactive wellness event hosted by the UCalgary Nursing Alumni Committee.

“My hope with the Wellnurse event is that participants rediscover the importance of rest and slowing down.”

Why did you go into nursing school in the first place?

“I was really excited about helping others in a new way! I knew that nursing was a great way to give back and was a high demand profession and offered me job stability post-COVID!”

What made you choose UCalgary Nursing as the school of choice?

“I completed my BHSc at the U of C and really enjoyed my first undergraduate degree experience. I was excited that I could complete my BN in two years at the U of C.” 

Best memory from nursing school?

“The SIM lab! I found the hands-on simulated learning so important for integrating my skills and critical thinking.”

What did you do in your spare time during nursing program?

“I taught yoga at Hot Shop. I also taught the barre and yoga teacher trainings at Hot Shop and Altr Yoga.”

Did you have a mentor or do you now?

“My mentor is Holly Feist [BN’01, MN’15]. Holly is a highly experienced ICU and ED nurse. She is also a professor at MRU and instructs the ACCN program. She became my mentor through the U of C NurseMentor program in Term 8.”

What is it about being a nurse or your current role that keeps you going?

“The other day a patient told me that I was a very caring nurse and she had thought I had been a nurse for a long time. I informed the patient that I had only been a nurse for a couple months and she was shocked and told me that this was definitely my calling. It was a really special thing to hear from a patient and helped to re-energize my new nursing practice.”

Any advice for new grads or current nursing students?

“For nursing students, the grind of the nursing program will be worth it — keep your eyes on the finish line! You can do it! For new grads, ask as many questions as possible, even if you think you know double and triple check, it will also help you build trust and solid relationships with the senior nurses on your unit.”

If you could go back in time, what would you say to your first-year self about nursing?

 “You won't fail the patho exam; take a deep breath!”

Madeline leads a crystal sound bath at the SPACE event.

How/why did you get involved in the mental health wellness projects at UCalgary Nursing with the various events you’ve been a part of so far?

“My first event was the U of C Nursing Alumni event in summer 2023. I most recently participated in the Space event for the Faculty of Nursing in March. My connections with my professors led to me becoming involved with faculty events. Justin Burkett actually comes to Hot Shop and has taken my public yoga classes and workshops, so he created a connection for our latest event - Space - for the Faculty of Nursing.”

What does self-care and wellness look like for you personally?

“Self-care and wellness is honestly asking yourself what you need day-to-day. As a new nurse working shift work, some days that looks like going to the gym or a yoga class after a shift and other day that looks like going to sleep and prioritizing rest.”

A talent you wish you had?

“100% IV success rate.”

Your greatest extravagance?

“Figs Scrubs.”

A dream yet to fulfill?

“ICU/ED Nurse and travel nurse.”

What’s your motto?

Lokah Samastah Sukhino Bhavantu (also the sanskrit prayer tattoo in my sleeve) Metta Prayer 'May all beings be free, happy, and well and may my life contribute to the freedom, happiness, and well-being of all.'”  

A fact or something people are surprised to learn about you?

“I have lived in East and Southeast Asia for a total of a year of my life. My first backpacking trip was for seven months through India, Nepal, Sri Lanka and my second backpacking trip was three months throughout Southeast Asia from Thailand to the Philippines.” 

Madeline leads a group in a sound meditation session

Madeline leads a sound meditation session at last year's WellNurse event.

Join the UCalgary Nursing Alumni Committee for its second WellNurse event on Friday, April 19, 2024. This will be a half-day dedicated to YOU, focusing on self-care practices that nurses often overlook. Space is limited, so register by April 16. 

WellNurse: Nurturing Mind, Body and Sleep  
Friday, April 19, 2024  
1 p.m. - 4:15 p.m.  
PF 2280, Professional Faculties