Marsha Floyd feels blessed to combine two professions she loves; nursing and education

Times certainly have changed since Assistant Professor, Marsha Floyd, began her nursing education at Burge School of Nursing in 1977. As a diploma school, a heavy emphasis was placed on clinical education and students spent 3-4 days per week in the hospital. Most students lived in the dorm where first-year students had rooms on the second floor, second year students on the third floor, and third year students on the fourth floor.

After graduating in 1980, Marsha began her nursing career as a house float and was the charge nurse on a different unit every night on the 3-11 shift until she took a permanent position on the pediatric unit.

In 1982, Marsha joined the faculty of Burge School of Nursing and taught Pediatric Nursing and Medical-Surgical Nursing for several years. Marsha remembers having several excellent instructors as a student. One in particular was Vickie Donnell, her clinical instructor, who always inspired others with her attention to detail and ability to know the right question to ask to make her students develop critical thinking. Somehow “Mrs. Donnell” always knew more about the student nurses’ patients then they did–even after much preparation!

Another instructor that stands out in her mind is Mertie Jones, who is now the Vice-Chair of the Cox College Board of Trustees. Like Vickie Donnell, Mertie seemed to always be a step ahead no matter how hard students worked or prepared for clinicals.

One of the most memorable experiences that Marsha had as a student happened during a major snow storm in the winter of 1980. Only two faculty members were able to make it that day, and since the dorm was attached to the hospital, students were still expected to report to clinicals as scheduled. When the students got there, most nursing units had no clinical instructor and very few staff nurses. So, they divided the senior students up among all of the floors and put them to work! The RNs that made it in that day were very happy to have help.

“I am blessed to have been able to merge two professions that I truly love; nursing and education,” Marsha said. Her greatest pleasure as a nurse educator has been the people she has worked with for the past 35 years–students and co-workers alike. She’s proud to be a member of the Cox College community and believes that no matter what challenges come up, the PEOPLE of Cox College come through and continue to work towards the mission of the College – meeting the needs of students and the health care community.