Sagaing 2018 Team Member, Indra Tum, was Born and raised in Yangon, Myanmar (Formerly Burma) where she lived for 17 years and her parents still reside today.
In 1988 she left home to attend school in Thailand as an international student and in 1991 moved to the United States to complete her undergraduate degree at Western Illinois University. She graduated in 1994 with a Business/Marketing degree.
You may be wondering how she got from a Business degree to becoming an Operating Room Nurse Anesthetist (CRNA). As fate has it she met her husband (Brian also from Burma) at the university who was finishing up his degree to become an Internal Medicine Doctor. He thought she would make a good nurse and her career path changed forever.
She graduated nursing school from Saint Francis Medical Center College of Nursing in Peoria, Illinois. Early in her career Indra worked in a Nursing Home and as she puts it, “cleaned poopy diapers” which made her violently ill.
She then had to overcome the fear of blood to become a ICU level one trauma nurse. Not being content with her life she applied for Anesthetist School. Normally a program like this would take up to three years to be accepted but to her surprise she was granted admission immediately to the thirty-three-month program.
The only problem was she had a newborn and toddler and the nursing school was three hours away. She packed her bags and left the kids with her husband. Indra tells the story of marking the children with a sharpie to see if her husband bathed them during the week when she was off at college. In 2010 she graduated from Anesthesia school and transferred to Richmond, Virginia where she currently lives with her husband, two boys ages 16 and 12, and the love of her life “Yoshi” a poodle mix. Indra is fluent in Burmese and has been a tremendous help translating and explaining local culture.
We are so fortunate to have Indra on our Sagaing 2018 team.