Your Neighbor: Meet Emily Collette
By Mandy Haggerson
For the Clemmons Courier
Emily Collette enjoyed growing up in a rural town. As the older of two girls in her family, she and her sister loved spending most of their time playing outside. “I’m a small town girl. I love the small town feel, “reflects the Mount Airy native.
Collette was very active in sports and community activities from an early age. She played tennis, swam, and participated in her church youth group. Being part of a team and something bigger than just herself was always important to her. “I learned and saw with my mom’s job as a nurse manager how amazing it was to help others. It impacted both my sister and I with choosing our career path. After high school, I went to Surry Community College to pursue nursing,” reflects Collette. She chose to finish up her degree in nursing at Lenoir-Rhyne University.
“I was really excited to start in the emergency room at Baptist Hospital after graduation,” recalls Collette. “Much like my mom, I am faith driven. I felt like helping others was my calling. Although, I think my mom was surprised that both my sister and I chose to follow in her footsteps professionally.”
Collette was embracing her medical career with open arms. “I ended up working at smaller hospitals where I’m from also,” mentions Collette. During that time Collette decided to go back to school online to become a nurse practitioner. “I was working full time and taking classes online for two years. I chose to do this because I wanted to do more for more patients, and I knew advancing my education would allow me to do so.”
With everything on Collette’s plate, she was pleasantly surprised, but not expecting to meet her future husband, Will. “We met in the emergency room setting when he was working as an emergency medical responder,” smiles Collette. Emily and Will realized how much they had in common, and were married after she completed her online classes and passed her boards. “It was definitely a busy month,” remembers Collette.
The newlywed was welcomed with open arms to various hospitals in Yadkinville and Elkin. After years of emergency room experience, Collette ended up setting up at a primary care firm at Novant Health Davie Medical Associates. “I get the best of both worlds, I get to have lasting relationships with my patients and still act as an advocate for them,” notes Collette.
Collette also had another title of ‘mom’ to consider with having a more regular work schedule. When Emily married Will, she instantly learned what it was like to be a boy mom becoming a stepmom to Will’s sons Kendell (17) and Peyton (15). Emily and Will also added Carter (4) and Ava Kate (3 months) to their family. “The kids are my biggest blessing for sure,” explains Collette. “I always knew I wanted to be a mom, but it truly was humbling.” Collette strives to be the mom to her children that her mother was to her. “Carter called my mom Nina. I talk about her to him all the time. Even though she’s not physically here anymore, I want the kids to know her,” describes Collette. Collette and her sister cared for their mother when she fought and ultimately lost her battle to uterine cancer. “It was absolutely devastating. But it gave me solace that my sister and I were there for her when she passed away. We were able to care for her instead of having hospice.”
Caring for others will always come naturally to Collette. Whether it’s her patients, children, or family, Collette never stops thinking of others before herself.