I asked school nurse Robin Cogan what makes her optimistic.

Robin told me, “My optimism is informed by a relentless pursuit of caring for children and families with complex health and social needs. Investing in the health, safety and well-being of community gives me hope that the seeds we plant today will bloom given a rich soil of compassion, nurturing, relationship building and belief in the promise each generation brings.”

I asked Robin about the inspirations in her life.  Robin said, “Inspirational people have been fluid in my life. I have been impacted by musicians, teachers, artists, nursing legends like Lillian Wald, and thankfully, they keep coming.”

I asked Robin about the best infectiously optimistic leaders she has seen and what she does to infect her nursing students with optimism. Robin told me, “The Dean of Rutgers-Camden Nursing, Dr Donna Nickitas is infectiously optimistic.  A true leader brings others forward and makes space for them to grow. 

I also think passion is infectious, that is how I infect my students. My passion for school nursing and asking them to be endlessly curious hopefully impact their learning.”

I asked Robin about the ways in which she maintains and increases her own optimism.  Robin said, “I find the use of social media, especially Twitter helps increase my optimism because I find like-minded people doing great work. My goal is to elevate the profile of school nursing and to grow collaborations across sectors in innovative and informative ways.” 

Robin Cogan is a school nurse in the Camden City School District.  Robin is Adjunct Faculty at Rutgers-Camden School of Nursing where she teaches in the School Nurse Certificate Program and serves as the Practicum Supervisor.


  • Victor Perton

    Chief Optimism Officer

    The Centre for Optimism

    I ask people what makes them optimistic.

    The purpose? To help everyone and anyone become more optimistic and to add to their CV “I am a realistic and infectiously optimistic leader.” My underpinning beliefs are “The leader looks like the person in your mirror” & “All good leadership is optimistic.” I am the author of “Optimism: The How and Why” and “The Case for Optimism: The Optimist's Voices”. I am the Founder and Editor of “The Australian Leadership Project” (www.australianleadership.com) I am an author, speaker, compère, moderator, barrister and researcher. In prison, schools, universities, boards, corporates, NGOs, conferences and retreats I have shared the learnings from “The Case for Optimism" & The Australian Leadership Project. I am available to moderate roundtables and retreats, deliver keynote speeches and conference panels and one-to-one coaching. For the right causes, we undertake CEO & board searches with optimistic leadership as the sought-after quality. My life experience includes stints as Commissioner to the Americas, 18 years a parliamentarian, practice as a barrister, mediator, arbitrator, businessman and board service. I was Senior Engagement Adviser in the Australian G20 presidency supporting Australian leadership of the G20 Finance Ministers & Central Bank Governors & in the Brisbane G20 Leaders Summit described by the Prime Minister as "the most important gathering Australia has ever hosted."