Mary Pat Mahlberg is a 3-11 charge nurse in the Behavioral Health Unit at Methodist Jennie Edmundson Hospital.
She started at Jennie as a student in the School of Nursing. At the time, there was a severe nursing shortage, and everyone was all but guaranteed a job when they finished.
Three years later, Mahlberg contemplated moving to Minnesota because there were no nursing jobs. She was lucky enough to secure one of four available jobs at Jennie and is still there 36 years later.
Mahlberg’s first experience as a charge nurse came six months into her employment when they looked around and said, “You’ve been here long enough, you’re in charge”. She has been a charge nurse ever since.
While probably not quite that simple, Mahlberg reflected on how much has changed over the years. It can sometimes be difficult to treat patients who suffer from mental illness or addiction because there aren’t always outward signs.
She said “We do now in three to four days what we use to do in four to six weeks, but it works in most cases; and it’s gratifying to know you have helped someone who struggles daily.”
After almost 40 years on Jennie’s campus, Mahlberg said that coming to work “feels like home.”