Be Ho, RN, an operating room nurse at Children’s – Minneapolis, says one of her faults is that she likes “everything to be perfect.” That makes her the ideal mentor for new staff in the operating room.

With a nursing practice that spans an ocean and more than four decades, Ho’s commitment to excellent patient care is evident in her work with new staff. “Operating room nursing is very different from bedside nursing. In addition to the patient care, there is much to learn about the instrumentation and technology,” says Ho. As new staff members gradually assume more independence, Ho understands the challenges they face.

“I often tell them, a diamond can’t be shiny without friction,” says Ho. “Just like us — we can’t be perfect without hard work and practice. You just have to keep trying.”

As a refugee from Vietnam in the late 70s, Ho knows what it means to keep trying. Her nursing licensure papers were lost as she fled her country. She began working at Children’s – Minneapolis in 1980 as a nursing assistant, then returned to school and received her nursing license a few years later. For Ho, the reward of being a mentor comes as she sees her new colleagues working independently and enjoying their jobs as much as she does.

“What appeals to me about operating room nursing is that I have to provide total care for a person who is unable to express his or her needs. I am there for them when they can’t speak for themselves.”