Staff Spotlight: Nurse Caroline Allen-Polk’s Passion for Nursing and Nurturing

It was never Caroline Allen-Polk’s plan to become a school nurse. But in December of 2001, a unique opportunity presented itself to her bringing a new dimension to her professional journey.

A full-time employee at Cooper University Hospital in Camden, NJ, Caroline had worked as an Assistant Nurse Manager at Cooper since August of 1987. She was asked to cover a nursing shift at a Y.A.L.E. School campus unexpectedly – and from there she was hooked.

“After working at Y.A.L.E. School for just one day, I asked if they needed a full-time nurse,” Caroline remembers. “And so that’s how my career at Y.A.L.E. school began. I knew immediately that I had found my passion in nursing with Y.A.L.E. students.”

In the 23 years since, Caroline has nurtured and cared for hundreds of students as the Ellisburg School Nurse, watching them grow into young adults. She is proud of the connections she has made, offering support and guidance to students and their families on their academic journey at Y.A.L.E. School.

Caroline is an advocate of positive mental health, and conveys its importance to Y.A.L.E. students through her empathy and compassion. Her personal approach to students helps her build trusting relationships so she can better understand their different needs and identify the best options and supports to assist them.

In 2020, Caroline bid farewell to Cooper Hospital and officially retired from her nursing duties there, but has continued to be an integral part of our staff at Y.A.L.E. School to this day.

Although nursing and caring for others is her full-time job, in her spare time she enjoys singing gospel songs and listening to music. As an avid performer in her church choir for over 35 years, she brings her signature dedication to not only her congregation but to her job, taking care of the students, families, and staff at Y.A.L.E. School.