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Heritage applauds the work of school nurse Emry Bryan

MADISON – Emry Bryan’s daily goal is to care for the needs of every student that comes to her clinic, whether she applies a Band-Aid, a hug, an encouraging word or an EpiPen. Bryan is Staff Member of the Year at Heritage Elementary School.

Her nursing career started in Huntsville Hospital’s Labor and Delivery department for nine years.

“After I had my first daughter, my world shifted,” Bryan said. “I changed to a part-time position, still in L&D, but decided to complete my paperwork (for) substitute school nurse for Madison City Schools on my off days.”

“Much to my surprise, I found out that every summer 3.5 full-time nurse positions are available. After an interview process, I was offered the position at Heritage Elementary. I’ve been part of this Heritage Ram family for five years now and love it,” Bryan said.

As school nurse, Bryan is seen as a person that students can visit when the stress of their day is too much. “Sometimes they just need a break,” she said.

With healthcare anywhere, paperwork is monumental. “I too have ‘t’s’ to cross and ‘i’s’ to dot at Heritage: checking immunization records, healthcare plans, medication orders, daily clinic charting, preparing medications or sub nurses for upcoming field trips, up-to-date training for staff, keeping inventory of needed supplies and expiring medications, tracing related illnesses and overseeing every aspect of what COVID-19 has brought this year,” Bryan said.

“As a nurse, I’ve learned, ‘Even when bad things happen, as long as the outcome is good, it was still a good day.’ Knowing that you did everything you could to help is a big part of making that happen,” Bryan said.

While attending Bob Jones High School, Bryan was crowned “Miss Madison.” “I then went to the University of Alabama at Birmingham running cross country and track from 2003-2004,” she said. She continued cross country at the University of North Alabama and graduated with a bachelor’s degree in nursing.

“I’m part of a military family. We moved a lot. Even though I never lived in Madison City, I’ve attended Madison City Schools since fourth grade. This school system holds most of my hometown memories,” Bryan said.

Her husband Sam Bryan co-owns Jimmy Bryan Construction. The daughters are five-year-old Warren Kathleen and Collins Elizabeth, almost two years old. The girls attend First Baptist Church in Madison’s Child Development Center.

Emry enjoys painting, singing and running.

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