Lindi McGaughy always had a passion for working with babies and their mommies. She worked as a childbirth educator and doula, attending women giving birth.
Then she went to nursing school, and it changed her life.
“I was almost 40 years old when I went to nursing school in order to become a midwife, but while there, I discovered that I found the most fulfillment in primary care of the whole family. I became a Family Nurse Practitioner.” she said.
Now, as associate professor of nursing in the University of Mobile School of Nursing, Dr. Melinda McGaughy guides the next generation of nursing professionals on their own path to fulfillment. We asked her to tell us more about what it takes to succeed in the field of nursing and why she chooses to teach and mentor at this Christ-centered university.
Q. What qualities does one need to succeed in nursing?
A. Nursing is not a job – it is a profession – and it carries with it professional responsibilities and obligations unlike any other. A foundation of knowledge, a commitment to hard work, intestinal fortitude (guts), and a heart of compassion can create a strong nurse.
Nursing is one of the most challenging educational programs in secondary education. Students with interests in biology, chemistry and math who have a commitment to caring for others can be very successful in the field of nursing.
Q. Why should someone choose to study nursing at UM?
A. The nursing faculty at the University of Mobile are the hardest working, most compassionate group of faculty I have ever met. They are passionate about teaching students to become the BEST nurses in the world. I feel honored and blessed to be on their team. They have created a stream-lined path for students to move from the associate’s degree to the doctoral level in a small, student-focused program, with positive outcomes. Very impressive.
Q. Why do you choose to teach at UM?
A. The #1 reason I chose to teach at the University of Mobile is the commitment of the nursing leadership and faculty to faith and student well-being. It has been a very rewarding experience.
Q. UM offers “Higher Education for a Higher Purpose.” What does that mean to you?
A. There is no higher purpose than loving God and caring for His people. In the School of Nursing in the College of Health Professions at the University of Mobile, we are committed to teaching AND learning how to do both of those things in the very best way.
Q. What is your background?
A. I earned my BSN and MSN in nursing from The Ohio State University and am a board-certified Family Nurse Practitioner. My nursing experience has been in neonatal intensive care, pediatric primary care, retail health, and family practice.
I served full-time in the graduate school on the Family Nurse Practitioner faculty at Ohio State for 6 years before relocating to Alabama. I completed a Post-Master’s certification in Advanced Practice Nurse Education and a Doctor of Nursing Practice from Otterbein University with a project focused on integrative advanced practice nursing education.
I have served on the advisory board for the Integrative Medicine Clinic at Ohio State. Also, I present regularly at national nursing organizations, and my research interests include evidence-based advanced nursing education, peer review in nursing education, faculty civility in higher education, and integrative health.
Q. What are some of your interests or hobbies?
A. I have seven grandchildren, ages 17 years to 5 months. They are my most fun interest! I also love to cook, study essential oils, grow plants and read (mostly non-fiction).