Wednesday, August 5, 2009
SON alumna Natalka Cap pursues nursing and dancingBy Katie Land, news editor
Oakland University alumna Natalka Cap is excelling in life with dual passions for nursing and competitive dance.
|SON alumna Natalka Cap loves both nursing and ballroom dancing.
The 1997 School of Nursing graduate began work as a registered nurse and was promoted to a position as an assistant director of nursing at HCR Manor Care. She now serves as a diabetes care specialist for Novo Nordisk.
With her professional life securely in place, Cap was ready for more.
Wandering into a salsa dancing club about 10 years ago, she was instantly hooked. Within a few short months, Cap enrolled in classes and soon became a competitive dancer – a pursuit that led her to win the 2008 World Pro Am American Rhythm Championship last November.
“It is tough to balance both my job and my competitive ballroom career,” she said. “But the key is to stay organized, to stay focused on the goals I have and to plan far in advance. If I do these things, I can succeed in both my job and my personal life.”
Cap combines her professional and personal lives by being an advocate for exercise to combat diabetes. And of course, her favorite form of exercise is dance.
“I help bring awareness to the diabetes cause and the need to get patients in better control of their blood sugar,” Cap said. “I love my job and thank Oakland University and my parents for that.”
Oakland was a place for Cap to nurture her interests and hone the self-discipline required for such a busy schedule. The experience opened many doors, she said.
“I loved my experience at Oakland University,” Cap explained. “I had tried several schools such as Wayne State and Madonna University, but Oakland University's campus is what attracted me. It was convenient and beautiful. I met some of my very dear friends that I still have today during my time in the nursing program.”
With dance, Cap’s biggest obstacle has been maintaining the demanding schedule. She has spent the past four years commuting to various cities to work with different partners and teachers. However, the work has paid off, she said.
Cap has placed strongly in every competition she danced in, including first place in the 2008 United States Open Gold American Rhythm Competition, American Rhythm Hotlanta in 2004, American Rhythm and Latin Cleveland Dancesport 2004. She placed second in the 2007 World Pro Am American Rhythm.
She encourages others to live by her example and work to maintain a life balanced between professional and personal interests.
“Always finish what you start,” Cap said. “Don't give up on your passions because you may regret it one day. And remember to stay connected to people, be modest and stay healthy so you can live a long time and accomplish all your goals.”
For more information on Oakland’s School of Nursing, visit the Web site at www.oakland.edu/nursing/.