Keeping up with Karina Zanyk McLean

For past DHS student and last year’s editor in chief of the Update, Karina Zanyk McLean, the opportunity to leave Midland and continue her education was something exciting and out of her comfort zone at the same time. After a considerable amount of thought about her college choice, major factors that influenced Zanyk McLean to choose the University of Michigan included its proximity to the rest of her family in conjunction with the programs it had to offer.

“I decided to go to U of M because I knew that I wanted to stay in Michigan, and it has the best nursing school in the state,” Zanyk McLean said. “I have a really strong relationship with my family, and I knew that being farther than 2 hours away from my family would be really difficult for me. My college choices really boiled down to U of M or MSU. In the end, I got into the U Mich nursing school, which has been amazing.”

Zanyk McLean is currently studying nursing, and has hopes of potentially going to graduate school later on to become a Nurse Practitioner. The University of Michigan offers an undergraduate degree in nursing along with graduate programs available for older students. Zanyk McLean is confident that the connections she makes in her four years at the university will prepare her well for whatever way she decides to take her career.

Due to the hospital at the University of Michigan, Zanyk McLean has also discovered that there are a plethora of opportunities for students looking towards degrees for the health field.

“Currently, I am working on a research project in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit [NICU] in the Mott’s Children’s Hospital, and it is literally right across the street from where I live,” Zanyk McLean said. “I get to be in the NICU, seeing the babies every day and conversing with different doctors, nurses, respiratory therapists, and researchers. The research experience itself is already opening up so many new doors to me and letting me into a world that I didn’t even know existed. Who knows, maybe I’ll end up doing research later in my life.”

While there are some aspects of high school that Zanyk McLean misses, she has grown accustom to college life and is enjoying the change of setting.

“To be honest, I miss very few things from DHS,” Zanyk McLean said. “I think at the end of my senior year I was definitely ready to leave; it was time to move on. I miss the teachers who influenced me the most in my life, like Mrs. Grocholski, Mr. Shahin, and Mr. Chambers. But truly, I was ready to graduate and am not looking back. Life has so many different opportunities open to me right now and I am extremely excited to follow the different options and make my life for myself.”

For more information on the University of Michigan hospital and NICU, visit

By Megan Pisarczyk

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