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Accidental CNA finds purpose in career

If you ask most nursing professionals why they entered this career field, they may tell you how they wanted to help people, but that’s not necessarily the case for Owola Shields, whose story is a bit different.

“I was washing dishes at a senior living community. They noticed how well I interacted with the residents and asked if I wanted to pursue my CNA (certified nursing assistant) license. I hadn’t really considered it before, but decided to give it a shot,” said Owola.

He soon discovered that his great rapport with residents served him well as a CNA, and he fell in love with helping others live their best life possible.

“I’ve been in this field for more than 20 years, since 1995. I’ve been here at Aberdeen Village for four months, though I was here eight to nine years ago. I’m glad to be back. I’m doing restorative aide work now as well, which I really enjoy,” said Owola. “I help residents continue on with exercises, etc., after they’ve been released from physical therapy.”

Not only does Owola enjoy helping residents restore their physical health, but he enjoys getting to know them as people, too.

“I enjoy their life stories and often get an education about things I’m not familiar with. I’m always learning new things from them,” said Owola. “I love my residents and that’s the number one thing. I enjoy my coworkers too. I just like the healthcare field in general. I like to see the residents get better. Sometimes they have a setback, and go through therapy, but I continue to do those exercises with them. It’s rewarding to see them get back to what they were before.”

Director of Sales and Marketing Chrissie Ammann shares why Owola is so appreciated at Aberdeen Village, “He is a good guy! The residents sure do love him!”

When he doesn’t have his “nursing” hat on, Owola likes to wear several other hats, including husband, father, grandfather, mechanic and fisherman.

“I’ve been married for 29 years, and have three sons, and two grandsons. I like to spend my spare time fishing, with the family, and working on cars every once in awhile. And I love watching sports. I’m a die-hard Chiefs fan and love football, and of course the Royals.”

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