A chance encounter at the Atlantic Health cafeteria in Summit gave Mary Pradilla a new career direction. It was there, a little more than four years ago, that Mary met CSE professor of health care management Dr. Linda Hunter. "It was a wonderful experience… Dr. Hunter made it so easy. I was already enrolled in a program at another local university when I changed gears…one week before classes at CSE were scheduled to start."
Mary is set to graduate with her master’s in health care management in May 2012. "It was difficult to make the choice in programs between pursuing a degree as a nurse practitioner or management program, because I enjoyed working in the clinic settings (hospital and home care) as a social worker and RN, but I always gravitated toward administration/management." Over the years, she has moved up through the ranks at Atlantic Health, building on her education which includes an undergraduate degree in psychology from University of Miami/Ohio and a BSN from Fairleigh Dickinson University. She expects obtaining her master’s will further her career potential.
"I was a little intimidated about returning to the classroom after a 20 year absence, but one really big plus is the personal touch and supportive environment at CSE," Mary said. "The health care management program is challenging and a perfect fit for my position at Atlantic Health. I like the classes and the mix of students. I’m with people from different hospitals who hold different positions…accountants, nurses, pharmacists…My instructors are really helpful, and Atlantic Health is very supportive."
Mary concluded, "If you really want personal connections and networking opportunities, this is a great program."