Tell me about your professional and educational background before you enrolled in our Master of Science in Nursing program.
I started out in nursing in 1981. I was a CNA [Certified Nursing Assistant]. At that time we weren’t certified, we were nurses’ aides. Ten years later I went to LPN school and I was an LPN for 19 years and decided in 2006 to go back to school to get my RN. So I went and got my Associate’s degree and then I graduated in December of 2010. In December 2014, I graduated from the University of Saint Mary with my Bachelor’s. Then I went on to pursue a career in the government and now I’ve decided to get my Master’s this year.
Why did you want to return to University of Saint Mary for your MSN?
I knew how the program worked. I already knew many of the instructors. The turnaround time for getting responses to issues that you have is phenomenal. I looked at other universities and I didn’t like the reviews and I already knew what Saint Mary’s was like. When we came to campus for my BSN graduation, that helped sealed the deal. The campus is gorgeous and I met people in person that were very nice.
How did you choose your education specialization for the MSN?
Nurse education is something I’ve done my entire career. I enjoy showing somebody a different way to do something. I also have a part time job teaching CNA’s on occasion. Sometimes when I’m teaching them I forget they’re not nursing students. But I teach in a way that makes them want to go a little bit further than being a certified nursing assistant. Every day at work I’m helping and teaching somebody something. Recently I’ve been made a preceptor too. I’m already doing it so I wanted to get the degree for it.
What has your experience been like with your classmates?
There are only three people in my class now so we’re always communicating. When one person doesn’t understand something, we’re in touch to help each other out. I think we are going to become lifelong friends.
What have your professors been like?
The instructors are available, professional, and interested. The feedback is phenomenal.
Why did you want an online program?
I enjoy being able to do my homework in my pajamas and whenever I have the time. I need something that is flexible to work around my schedule.
How is University of Saint Mary different than other schools you’ve been to?
I had an issue not too long ago and I called my advisor and told her. The Nursing Department Chair called me to talk about it. You don’t get that at some big college. You get delegated to somebody. When I went to get my Associate’s degree you didn’t have somebody in upper management calling you if you had a concern. That’s a plus for me. That’s what I like about University of Saint Mary.
What would you say to students who are considering entering the BSN or MSN program?
Choose the University of Saint Mary. Choose it because you can ask your instructors to pray with you, pray for you. It’s a beautiful facility. People actually care here. I love the university. The people are nice and the admissions process is great.