Mary Ellen has been with AdventHealth Central Texas for over 20 years. She has a bachelor’s degree in nursing and is certified as a Medical Surgical Nurse. Advancing in her career from a Nursing Assistant, she obtained her LPN in 1992 and her RN in 1998. In 2011 she had the opportunity to move to Education department. Today, she is the Clinical Education Manager, and the adjunct faculty for CTC in the VN nursing program. “At the heart of being in healthcare is being a caregiver, Knox says. “That has not changed in the 30 years I have been doing this, but what has changed is the science and I love being at the forefront of new discoveries.”
Why did you enter the healthcare field?
My aunt was an LPN and she asked if I had every considered being a CNA. I did not know what that meant. I quickly got into a CNA program. On day one they showed the career ladder from CNA to RN and I knew one day, I would be an RN. It felt "right" caring for people.
What does It mean to be a “Woman in Healthcare?”
Being in healthcare puts on the front lines of new medications and treatments that have shown to be effective for a variety of disease processes and illnesses. I find this most exciting. Especially when we change a specific line of treatment that we used in the past and now there is something better. I love how it is always evolving and never stagnate. Being a woman in healthcare you need to embrace the changes.
What would you go back and tell yourself on your first day on the job?
Just when you think it can't get any better, it does. I have had an amazing career thus far and new opportunities present itself frequently. Recently I became the manager of education. Educating is my passion. I am also the site liaison for our transition to Epic. I cannot be more thrilled to be a part of it. I was here at Central Texas when we went live with Cerner. I love acquiring new knowledge and skills. You can never stop learning.
How do you balance your personal and professional life?
I enjoy spending time with my daughter. I am a homebody and love working in my backyard, enjoying the birds and critters that hang out there. Love time with my pets too.
What lessons have you learned in your role?
Oh so many. Most importantly you need to love people. I can strike up a conversation with just about anyone. You may not always "click" with some but that's alright. Just be your genuine self.