My Story: Karen Owens

For 23 years, I’ve spent my life caring for others as an RN. I enjoyed my job as a critical care nurse and found the position to be challenging as well as fulfilling. I was proud to help those who were critically ill and support their families through difficult times.

However, after being diagnosed with a psychological disability, the demands and the stress of my job made it too difficult to continue. I loved my job very much, and having to give it up was devastating, but I decided to find an alternate path to make a fresh start for myself by going back to school for ultrasonography.

Karen Owens practices her computer skills at Goodwill Industries of Knoxville.
Karen Owens practices her computer skills at Goodwill Industries of Knoxville.

After receiving a referral from vocational rehabilitation, I began taking computer courses at Goodwill Industries of Knoxville to help prepare for my return to college. I was surprised to learn that Goodwill® helped people like myself with various difficulties by preparing them for their next steps in life.

Through this program, I learned patience, endurance and how important technology and computer skills are in today’s world. I’m now familiar with computer programs like Microsoft Word, Excel and PowerPoint, and knowing how to operate these programs will be important as I prepare for college.

Because of Goodwill, I have a place to learn and I am living a happier life. My entire outlook is brighter because I see a place for me and a way that I can care for the ill and injured again.

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