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As a Vietnamese American growing up in Westminster, California, Centralized RN Case Manager, Lam Tran, never imagined that he would later be impacting and serving his community in such a major way. 

Lam Tran always knew he had a passion for helping others. In high school, he participated in the Regional Occupational Program for CNA. He enjoyed it, but chose to explore other avenues in college and received a bachelor's degree in psychology from California State University, Long Beach. After college, he decided to move forward with pursuing nursing. He began his career with Planned Parenthood of Orange and San Bernardino Counties (PPOSBC) in December 2012, only six months after graduating from nursing school. 

Though Tran did not know much about Planned Parenthood before he applied for the position, he researched and aligned with PPOSBC’s mission, especially protecting and promoting the fundamental right of all individuals to make their own personal health decisions. He also felt that his background in psychology would be a bonus when it comes to patient interactions. “You can get in their shoes better and have more empathy.”

In the past nine years with PPOSBC, Tran progressed and grew in his career within the organization. “When I first got here, we didn’t offer primary care. And then, a couple of months later, we started to offer primary care when Dr. Connolly came on board - I saw everything from the beginning,” said Tran.

When Tran was working at the Westminster Health Center, he was able to help alleviate language barriers and connect with the community by serving as a translator for Vietnamese patients. It was helpful for patients to see themselves represented in the staff serving them, and  made these patients feel comfortable and seen.

According to Tran, the major highlights of his PPOSBC career are the organization's culture and patient appreciation. “When I am with my fellow coworkers, it doesn't seem like a job, and the appreciation you get from patients - that brightens my day.”

Tran is a leader in PPOSBC and loves to train new hires and those seeking knowledge. This is what made Tran ideal as a part of the core team to help establish the PPOSBC’s Vaccine Clinic program during the height of the pandemic. He was prepared to administer vaccines, but instead found a way to help further serve the community by drawing the vaccine doses and ensuring that no amount went to waste. His time working with the Vaccine Clinic program solidified his choice to become a nurse, and he was so humbled to receive support and appreciation from the community.

In his spare time, Tran enjoys baking desserts and bread and planting produce. “I planted a whole bunch of different trees. Being Asian, I like to fill every plot of land with fruit trees. [I have] orange trees, grapefruit, cherry trees, pears, pomegranates, and Asian fruits like lychee.“

He feels baking brings people together and loves to boost morale by sharing his delicious talent with his coworkers. “Whenever we have potlucks, [which] I always encourage, people become like family and help each other.”

A tradition that is especially important to Tran is celebrating Tết Nguyên Đán (Lunar New Year) with his family. He enjoys quality time, eating and playing games, and recently learning how to cook traditional food for Tết. He has made his own Bánh tét chuối, a rice cake with a type of bean wrapped with banana leaf. Tran served them to his parents, and they were shocked to find out that Tran had made the Bánh tét chuối himself. They loved them so much that they requested them every year. “Hearing their praise and acceptance was emotional.” His parents even offered to invest in Tran’s baking if he wanted to pursue it professionally. It meant a lot to Tran, to have his parents and family’s approval and support.

Through PPOSBC’s education assistance program, Tran returned to school, and he received his Bachelor's Degree in nursing from Golden West College in December 2021. He strives to be the best version of himself to represent his family, heritage and community.

In recognition of Asian American & Pacific Islander Heritage Month (AAPI) and National Nurse Week week, we would like to recognize the important influence the AAPI community has on the history, culture, and achievements of our organization and the nation, like Lam Tran. Our nurses and entire staff make a huge difference in the communities we serve. 

When you choose a career with Planned Parenthood, you choose a career with purpose. Our team is proud of their work to ensure access to high-quality, compassionate care for all. You too can help change lives and empower communities. View our available career opportunities at PPOSBCCareers.org.