Q&A with UM School of Nursing Professor Mattie Easter

Kathy DeanFaculty Q&A, News

Mattie Easter chose a career in nursing because she wanted to help people.

“Nursing is a caring profession where you can make a difference every single day. You are with patients and families at their most vulnerable times,” she says.

Now, as coordinator of undergraduate admissions and advisor in the School of Nursing at the University of Mobile, she helps students achieve their dreams of joining the nursing profession. We asked her why someone wanting to become a nurse should choose UM, and how she became the person who can help them reach their goal.

Q: Why should someone choose to study nursing at the University of Mobile?

 A: Obtaining a degree in nursing at the University of Mobile is a wonderful experience! You know your faculty, and they know you. We want you to succeed. We not only teach you to take care of the physical aspects of patients, but the spiritual needs as well. Our faculty have many years of experience. Our skills lab and simulation lab in the Center for Excellence in Healthcare Practice are state-of-the-art.

Q: You have worked at UM for 30 years. What is your background?

 A: I taught in the classroom and clinical setting for the first part of my career at the university, and then moved into my current role of coordinator of undergraduate admissions/advisor. I have been a registered nurse for over 40 years, working in the acute care setting for most of those years. I received an Associate Degree in Nursing from Mobile College – now the University of Mobile. Then I returned to school, completing a Bachelor of Science in Nursing and Master of Science in Nursing at the University of South Alabama. I specialized in oncology nursing where I was nurse manager. I have also had experience in orthopedics, medical-surgical nursing, urology, nephrology and Sickle Cell patients.

 Q: What advice would you give high school students who are considering nursing as a major in college?

A: If you are thinking about majoring in nursing at the University of Mobile, you will never regret it! It is a challenging major, but so worth it. Study hard, and take as many advanced courses as possible, especially in the science area.

 Q: As an advisor for students in nursing school, how do you help them handle the demanding curriculum?

 A: My favorite Bible verse is Philippians 4:6-7. “Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. Then you will experience God’s peace, which exceeds anything we can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus.”

Q: What do you enjoy doing when you’re not helping students at UM?

 A: I enjoy walking and reading. They are both relaxing. Walking outside allows me to look around and be grateful to God for my many blessings. Also, any opportunity to talk with my two sons, James and Benjamin, makes me happy.