The Catholic University of America

Pat McMullen, Ph.D.

Professor, School of Nursing

Where you are from?

I grew up in Silver Spring, MD, a suburb of Washington, DC.  Interestingly, when I was a child, New Hampshire was a 2 lane road with only one or two traffic lights.

What is your educational background?

I received my BSN, MS in Nursing, and a Post-Master’s certificate from The University of Maryland School of Nursing.  I also obtained a Juris Doctor from the University of Baltimore School of Law and a PhD in Nursing from The Catholic University of America.

What is your discipline/research area and set of accomplishments?

I really have two disciplines of interest, nursing and the law.  I’ve been able to combine my interests in these two fields by conducting research on patient satisfaction with prenatal care services both here in the United States and abroad in Spain and Germany.  I’ve also served as of counsel and as an expert witness on personal injury and medical and nursing malpractice cases.  Currently, I’m collaborating with providers at the R. Adams Cowley Shock-Trauma Center in Baltimore as well as colleagues in the School of Engineering and the School of Nursing on research that uses health information technology to help patients who have been hospitalized at Shock-Trauma transition to home.

What were obstacles to overcome along the way?

Finding scholarship funds was always a challenge.  Fortunately, once I had a BSN degree, I was able to work some overtime to help finance some of my education.  Along the way, there were always individuals who believed in me and provided excellent mentorship.

Who where your mentors or role models along the way?

I have had so many mentors and role models along the way.  These people shared their expertise, provided encouragement, and I always had the feeling that they really wanted me to succeed.  Without solid mentors I would not have been able to accomplish very much.

What do you do in your leisure time?

I have a husband and two children who make sure I keep a balance.  I play tennis almost every Saturday, I live near a park with a 4 mile bike trail and it allows me to bike to visit my parents, who reside in an assisted living facility nearby.  I’d better stay somewhat fit, since longevity runs in my family—my father is 97 years old, my mother is 88 years old, my grandmother lived to be 100, and my great-great aunt lived to be 105!