Ashley Ryan '15, '21

Academic Program: MSN - Nurse Educator

Why do you want to become a nurse educator?

I was provided with the opportunity to return to Carroll as an alum to help teach the current undergraduate nursing students in skills and simulation lab each week. Through this opportunity, I realized how much I truly loved education and working with future nurses. A large part of nursing is education. As a RN, you must be able to adapt quickly to the ever-changing and challenging methods of nursing. With today’s technology and research outcomes, nurses are at the center of the medical team. As technology continues to progress, nurses must learn to advance and heighten their education as well. Nurse educators have the ability to educate nurses, both novice and expert, to continuously find better ways to help serve our patients, promote furthering education and work as an intra-professional leader to enhance policy change. I believe this program will allow me to help develop novice nurses into experts and lead change among universities and hospitals.

What drew you to Carroll’s program?

I was immediately drawn to Carroll’s MSN-NE graduate program as I am an alum of Carroll’s undergraduate BSN program. I loved my time at Carroll. Countless opportunities and experiences have come my way since graduating from Carroll with BSN degree. And here I am again drawn back to Carroll. The program is laid out in a way that makes working as a full-time RN and attending graduate school possible. Carroll has one of the best nursing programs in the United States and I am very proud to say I was a part of that program. The faculty and staff at Carroll are always willing to help and truly care about making you the very best person you can be no matter what your major is. Carroll has felt like a second home to me for many years now.

Are you working in the field now?

I have been working as an RN since I graduated from Carroll in 2015. I have experiences in the ICU, hyperbaric medicine, wound care and clinic nursing. I also have been working in the skills and simulation labs at Carroll with the undergraduate nursing program for the last three years. Through these experiences I have learned just how important having a strong education is.

How does Carroll’s hybrid model—which offers both online and in-person classes—benefit you?

The programs format allows me to continuing working full time and enjoy the things I love to do while attending school full time. The hybrid format provides you with the responsibilities of being an adult and staying motivated to excel in the program with the freedom of completing your assignments on your own time. The layout of half online and half the classes face to face still provides you with the opportunity to ask questions and get to know your professors. It also allows you to complete assignments on your own time, but also provides you with the chance to ask questions and practice while being guided by your professors who are also educators and practicing professionals.

Can you tell us a little about your experience as a student? How are you able to manage the time demands?

My experiences as a student have been very rewarding and manageable. I can continue to work as an RN and spend time with my family and friends. I even planned a wedding! With classes only meeting once a week, there’s still time to live and learn. The class schedule also allows you to graduate in a short amount of time so you can begin your career as a clinical educator.

Students in our program learn in our state-of-the-art nursing simulation facilities. How have these benefitted your education?

I have been lucky enough to not only practice in these facilities as a student but also as a future nurse educator. The facilities and technology available at Carroll provide you with the ability to practice on life like manikins and use supplies that are currently being used in hospitals and clinics.

Learn more about Carroll's MSN - Nurse Educator program 

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