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Mary Sillivant

Motlow College more than just convenient for nursing student

by Shane Levan, Staff Writer

While the location of Motlow College campuses is convenient for students throughout Middle Tennessee, recent nursing graduate Mary Sillivant of Fayetteville found the competitive nature of Motlow's nursing program even more beneficial.

Motlow presented Sillivant an opportunity to achieve a lifelong goal while receiving an education from one of the best nursing programs in the country.

"I knew I wanted to go through Motlow's nursing program," said Sillivant. "I did not see the point in going elsewhere since Motlow produces such good nurses. Local hospitals talk about Motlow nurses versus other nurses and brag about Motlow's reputation. I kind of wanted to be under that wing of reputation."

Mary Sillivant Not only did Motlow provide Mary the education she needed to begin her career, it also gave her the opportunity to be involved in several activities.

"I've always been an involved person," continued Sillivant. "I was in student government in high school, and played every sport and participated in any activity that was available. I did the same when I came to Motlow. I was involved with the Student Government Association as a sophomore senator and was a member of Phi Theta Kappa honor society, where I was vice president of the Fayetteville Center."

Nursing has always been a passion for Mary. While growing up in Fayetteville, her mom was a nurse at Donalson Care Center, and the exposure to the medical field at a young age stuck with Mary.

"Since I was younger I always wanted to be a nurse because I was always around healthcare," continued Sillivant. "I often played piano for the patients at Donalson. I just enjoyed the environment and interacting with people."

Sillivant actually began working in the medical field prior to attending Motlow. When a unit secretary position at Lincoln Medical Center (LMC) in Fayetteville opened up, she applied immediately. After a year of working as a unit secretary, the manager of the surgery department offered her a technician position. She continued working in the surgery department, and eventually the hospital gave Mary a scholarship to attend the nursing program.

"Everyone knew I was interested in nursing school," added Sillivant. "That opened the door for me to enter the nursing program. The scholarship from the hospital came after my acceptance to the program."

After receiving her associate of applied science degree in nursing from Motlow, Mary was hired as a nurse in the surgery department at LMC. Because of the scholarship she received from LMC, she is under contract to work for the hospital for two years.

Mary started her orientation as a nurse in the surgery department about four weeks after graduating from Motlow. She was hired on as a 'float', which means she can be moved to different departments if necessary.

"My transition was pretty quick," she added. "I got offers from multiple people to work for other departments in the hospital, but my manager in surgery wanted to keep me. I love what I do."

Mary feels that graduating from Motlow's nursing program will keep opening doors for her as she continues with her career. She eventually plans on teaching nursing and will soon enroll in a bridge program through the University of West Georgia, which will allow her to earn a bachelor's degree, and subsequently, a master's degree in nursing.