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Meet Kellyn Pak of Resuscitation Basics in Alhambra

Today we’d like to introduce you to Kellyn Pak.

Kellyn, please share your story with us. How did you get to where you are today?
I’ve been an ER nurse for 15 years and would have never expected to venture out beyond hospital walls. I’ve had a passion to teach ever since I was a child and have fond memories of my little sister and I playing “school” with our dolls. I was the school teacher and she would be the “teacher’s helper.”

I was very blessed growing up in a poor neighborhood of Los Angeles. I had the support of my grandparents who raised me and my parents who worked multiple jobs to provide for the family. I am a third generation Chinese American who was raised learning American values but ate Chinese food every day and spoke “Chinglish” at home. Raised in an Asian household, pursuit of higher education was an absolute in order to be considered a good daughter. Thanks to my hardworking family, I was given the privilege to attend nursing school and eventually a Master’s degree in Nursing Education.

I landed my first new grad nurse job in a small community Emergency Room and eventually worked my way to the larger Trauma Centers. I went from bedside nursing, to Clinical Instructor, teaching students at the nursing schools, and now a Senior Nursing Instructor educating and training hospital staff.

About 5 years ago, one of my colleagues suggested I “take the show on the road” insisting the classes I teach are much needed in the community. More so, the kind of training and education in my arena equips people to save lives. What a high calling!

After a few more years of coaxing by my fellow nurse-teachers, I finally took the leap of faith and set up shop…in my garage. I put aside some “play money” to invest and told myself when this little business account reaches zero, I’m closing shop. I moved forward to invite a handful of my most favorite nurse educators, made up a company name and bought a handful of used equipment from eBay, and wouldn’t you know it. So many supporters gave me a handout to start the business. We have been able to offer healthcare classes to schools, churches, hospitals and clinics.

What is really exciting is that every year, I tell myself “this year we will close up shop.” Our team is made up of nurses who all hold a regular full-time job. Many of us have young children or families to care for and it certainly is a lot of time and effort invested to keep this up. Our classes are tailored in such a way so learning is fun and the classroom is not a sterile environment, so many times, the overhead costs go beyond our revenue. But our mission remains the same because the community is safer the more we educate. So imagine that – the business has maintained itself for these last 3 years, and somehow, we have been graciously been given just the right amount of classes to keep us afloat. Something tells me we were meant to exist.

Here we are today, with a cozy little healthcare education service run by a bunch of nurses who love to teach, inspire, and invest into our community. Best part of it, I get to be the teacher and my sister, a web designer by trade, is my webmaster and AV tech, also known as my teacher’s helper!

We’re always bombarded by how great it is to pursue your passion, etc – but we’ve spoken with enough people to know that it’s not always easy. Overall, would you say things have been easy for you?
No, it has not been a smooth road. Rather, it’s been a constant sacrifice. I’m a wife, mother of 2 and a care giver to my 90-year-old grandparents. I hold a full-time job at the hospital and like many of my instructors this “side gig” is not intended to be a money maker for us. We can all agree that the purpose of our existence is to reach the community but the amount of time and effort takes a toll. Year after year, I tell myself that we will have to close up shop. Is it worth the time away from our families? Is the time and effort outside our full-time job ever going to pay off? Miraculously, RB has financially maintained and there are so many non-tangible payoffs that keep our instructors coming back class after class. We are here for a purpose. The struggle is there, but it is worth it!

So, as you know, we’re impressed with Resuscitation Basics – tell our readers more, for example what you’re most proud of as a company and what sets you apart from others.
Resuscitation Basics is a healthcare education company run by ER nurses. We offer classes to the community such as CPR and First Aid as well as specialty classes for nurses, particularly Trauma Nursing Core Course (TNCC) and Emergency Nursing Pediatric Course (ENPC). Our mission is about “life-changing learning.” We desire to provide our learners a training experience that can make an impact in how they live, work, or care for others. This is what sets us apart from the many other healthcare education companies out there. Our instructors teach with intention to be a resource, a connection, and support system.

We’ve all been there before, in a training class with that “talking head” in a sterile class environment – not cohesive to learning or retaining information. What makes us different is we teach as if we were the student. If I were the student, I would like to learn about something that has meaning and impact on my life, the speakers should be enthusiastic, approachable, and credible. I’d want the classroom to be inviting and coffee and snacks is always a bonus. So this is what we try to deliver.

We’ve been very blessed with a hotspot in downtown Los Angeles called CTRL Collective DTLA. They have provided us a fabulous classroom space so beautiful that our students tell us they want to live there! We’ve conducted several of our TNCC classes there and I am proud to partner with them. What a privilege it is to work with their awesome staff.

On several occasions, our students have made the mistake of presuming that their co-working space belongs to us and their staff belongs to our staff. A huge thanks to CTRL for making RB look so good! Their classroom is another piece that sets us apart.

So, what’s next? Any big plans?
I am not sure what the future holds for RB. We take it one class at a time. If we are given the gracious opportunity to offer another class for another year, we will serve the community with our best foot forward with the time we have been given.

Contact Info:

Image Credit:
Shellyn Wong from Snoring Walrus Creations

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