From meal times to medicine: My career journey at Muskoka Shores

Posted by Holly Gostick, RPN on Apr 17, 2023
 Holly - cropped
I’ve been a part of the Sienna team for nearly 10 years. During this time, I’ve always worked at Muskoka Shores Community in Gravenhurst, ON, but the capacity I’ve worked in has certainly evolved throughout my time here. 

When I was fresh out of college and needed a job, I decided to apply to the Dietary Department at Muskoka Shores. I honestly didn’t know how much I would enjoy working in long-term care, however, I was happy when I landed the job – and I would soon learn that this was the best decision I could have made. 

I worked as a Dietary Aide, completing the Food Service Worker program. In this role, I only got to see the residents at meal times. Regardless, I was determined to make a positive impact. I got to know residents’ preferences and I remember them being extremely happy to see me on shift because they knew they would get their meals just the way they liked them. 

After a few years, I decided I would enter the Personal Support Worker program and graduated with honors. From there, I transferred departments and I applied the same personalization to the care I provided, helping to make residents’ days more meaningful. 

But my true passion was something I had not pursued. From a young age, I wanted to become a nurse but I never thought I would actually get to that point. However, my team at Muskoka Shores was so encouraging and they pushed me to continue with my career development. Holly G 2-1

So once again, I decided to go back to school in 2020 and became a Registered Practical Nurse, right here where it all started at Muskoka Shores. Having progressed from dietary aide, to PSW, and now to an RPN, I’ve built a great base of knowledge and respect for all jobs and departments. 

If it weren’t for the encouragement from my team, I don’t know that I would have made it to this point. Years of great friendship have made hard days easier and working as a team, we all understand our purpose; to support residents and cultivate happiness in daily life. And the senior staff have set an incredible example of how personalized care brings happiness and contentment to our residents. 

At Muskoka Shores, I have the pleasure of working with my family. I work alongside my sister, Athena, but my other colleagues now feel like family as well. 

As an RPN, I look forward to cultivating happiness in new ways. And equally as important, this career has allowed me to cultivate happiness in myself. I am right where I am supposed to be and I’m proud to have established trusting connections with the residents who allow me to ensure their happiness and safety every day.


Topics: Long Term Care, Sienna Senior Living, Cultivating Happiness, Life at Sienna, Ontario, Career, Nursing