MARSHALL – When Yolanda Cobley was 8, an illness briefly put her in the hospital.
“I thought how nice the nurses were, and I enjoyed getting to know them,” the Albion native recalled. Over time, the experience blossomed into an interest in medicine that flowered when she was in junior high school.
“I just knew I wanted to be in and around the hospital,” Cobley said. “And the reason I picked nursing is because I always enjoy the diversity the job offers, and the special relationship nurses have with their patients.” An early job-shadowing experience with several nurses cemented her conviction.
The former Yolanda Solis is a familiar face at Oaklawn. Having graduated in May with a master of science degree in nursing from Michigan State University, she will begin a new role as a family nurse practitioner, working alongside cardiologist Aajay Shah, M.D., in Oaklawn’s Heart & Vascular Medical Office.
Cobley received her bachelor of science degree in biomedical sciences in 1997 from Western Michigan University, she went on to receive a bachelor of science degree in nursing in 2001 from MSU.
Her clinical experience includes work with the Veterans Health Administration in Battle Creek; Marshall-based Advanced Gynecological Services; and Leslie-based Henry Ford Allegiance Family Health.
However, Cobley’s relationship with Oaklawn is long-standing, stretching back to service as a registered nurse beginning in 2001. She has worked more recently in Oaklawn’s Post Anesthesia Care Unit and Critical Care Unit/Stepdown Unit.
“Once I started working at Oaklawn, it just felt like family from the get-go. This is just the best fit,” Cobley said.
In recent months, while continuing her studies at Michigan State University, Cobley rotated in the Oaklawn Medical Group OB Call Suite with Christine Nault, FNP. Starting in January, she did a rotation with Dr. Shah in the heart and vascular office.
Cobley’s appreciation for Oaklawn extends to the Calhoun County community, with which she has been familiar since her youth.
“It’s more of a hometown feeling for me, because of all those long-term relationships. I feel I know everyone, from housekeeping to the director of nursing – just everybody.
“I feel lucky that there was an opportunity for me to stay, and in the area that I enjoy the most,” she said.
Cobley, a registered nurse since 2001, is certified in basic cardiac life support, advanced cardiac life support, pediatric advanced life support and perioperative nursing practice. She is a member of the Michigan Council of Nurse Practitioners, the Michigan Council of Nurse Practitioners and the Association of Peri-Operative Nurses.
Cobley and her husband of 15 years, Chris Cobley, are considering moving to Marshall but for the time being will continue to live in Albion with their children, Cameron, 8, and Ava, 6. The family enjoys the outdoors, and often spend their summers camping, boating, swimming and fishing in Indiana.