RN Bridging Program helps couple work in their dream jobs

Maricris et Paul Lamano

Maricris and Paul Lamano love living in Prince Edward Island. 

They say the Island was an easy choice when they moved to Canada with their six-year-old son in 2017 from the Philippines because it reminds them of where they lived in Batangas, a province surrounded by beautiful beaches.  

“Everyone knows everyone in Batangas and if they don’t, they ask who your father is, just like here,” Maricris laughs.  

They both worked as nurses for more than ten years in the Philippines. Maricris was excited when the province introduced the RN Bridging Program a couple of years ago and she wanted to be part of the first graduating class. 

“I am so happy that I completed the program because I got my dream job,” she says. 

Maricris works at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Charlottetown as a nurse in the rehabilitation unit.  

Paul also enrolled and now he will complete the program in a couple of weeks. He received a $3,750 tuition subsidy as well, which is now available through the program to eligible participants. 

Both Paul and Maricris say they are very happy that the RN Bridging Program is available for internationally educated nurses to get the qualifications they need to work as nurses in PEI.    

“We love the professionalism of nurses in Canada and we have made many friends through the program,” Paul says.  

The couple encourages other internationally educated nurses to apply for the RN Bridging Program.  

“Don’t lose hope that you can work here as a nurse; this program is here to help you to pursue your nursing profession in PEI.”   

The Lamanos say it was challenging at times to raise a family while working at various jobs and going back to school at the same time. 

“In the beginning it was hard to come here for a better life without the support from close family that we were used to,”  Maricris said. “We’re like an old tree removed from our soil and now we are in new soil.” 

But in the end, they say it was worth it. They are Canadian citizens now and they plan to stay in PEI forever.  

The RN Bridging Program is provided by the provincial government to help internationally educated nurses - and Canadian nurses who wish to re-enter the nursing field - build on previous training and meet PEI’s nursing qualifications through a mixture of in-person and online learning, and practical application.   

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