Northwest Passage Welcomes Jennifer Gwiazda, Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner, to their team
Northwest Passage, a residential mental health treatment program for children located in northwestern Wisconsin, is pleased to welcome Jennifer Gwiazda, MSN, PHMNP-BC, to their clinical team as a Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner.
Jennifer attended UW-Madison and obtained a BS in consumer science with the dream of owning her own clothing boutique. After a recession in the early 2000s, life situations brought her to Chippewa Falls, Wisconsin. While there, and searching for a deeper purpose than helping people be fashionably dressed, Jennifer decided to pursue nursing. She attended Chippewa Valley Technical College and obtained her ADN in 2010. She worked various jobs as a nurse including hospice, managed care with developmentally disabled adults, cardiology, and psychiatry. She obtained her BSN from UW-Eau Claire in 2016 and her MSN from Husson University in 2021.
Jennifer did a clinical rotation at Northwest Passage in the summer of 2020 and enjoyed the holistic approach and philosophy that Northwest Passage embodies, and their team approach to treating mental health. Jennifer’s goal is to help kids improve upon their mental health and feel a sense of control over it, which sometimes means medication but may also be accomplished by reinforcing the PassageWay lifestyle choice components at Northwest Passage’s core. Jennifer loves going to work at Northwest Passage every day and knows that no two days will ever be the same.
Jennifer has been married to her husband Nick for 10 years (and through 3 degrees!). They recently moved to a beautiful home in Amery, Wisconsin with their two kids, Ani (15) and Claire (9). Jennifer has a passion for doing yoga and tries to practice some form of it daily. She is currently pursuing training in trauma-informed yoga practice and hopes to eventually merge her passion for psychiatry and yoga together.
When asked what “hope” means to her, Jennifer states “Hope is knowing that the current situation is not the only situation. Hope is knowing that there is something better on the other side of the challenge and that you have the strength and ability to get to that other side, but sometimes need help with the tools to get there. Hope is the realization that people around you want you to succeed in life because success is not finite – I don’t lose my success in life when those around me gain it. When we all succeed in living a full life, society itself succeeds and flourishes.”
About Northwest Passage
Northwest Passage is focused on blending traditional mental health treatment with arts and nature-based therapy to restore hope in their clients. By investing in the lives of marginalized youth, Northwest Passage is influencing and changing how mental health is ultimately treated and viewed. The transformations seen are no less than extraordinary.