Why Are There So Many Filipino Nurses? Virginia Beach Doctoral Student Decides to Research.

 In Nurses Weekly

Hospitals smell like home to Ren Capucao.

“People find it weird,” he said with a laugh. “For me, visiting the hospital was a fun thing.”

Growing up in Virginia Beach, Capucao, now 27, would often visit his mother at Chesapeake Regional Medical Center, where she worked as a nurse for three decades.

“I would see all these Filipino health care workers at the hospital, and most of them were nurses,” he said.

It didn’t seem unusual — in the Filipino family in which he was raised, it was normal to be encouraged to be a nurse. But as he grew older and entered the field himself, he started to wonder why.

So he decided to find out. For the past few years, starting out of curiosity and now as part of his dissertation for a doctorate of philosophy in nursing at the University of Virginia, Capucao has researched the history of Filipino nurses in Virginia and beyond.

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