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Michelle Patch

“A lot of times we feel really comfortable with telling people about what we did that was successful and was easy, right? And then we’re maybe a little more reluctant to talk about our failures. But I think those are just so, so important and instructive in how we got where we got.”

School of Nursing

Nursing, PhD 2019

Assistant Professor, Johns Hopkins School of Nursing

Michelle‘s Podcast Episode

In this episode, we discuss Michelle’s fascinating journey from the US Navy, ROTC, and working in the Navy Nurse Corps to getting her master’s and eventually her doctorate in nursing from Johns Hopkins, her experiences working in different leadership roles at the Johns Hopkins Hospital and School of Nursing, and her take on the importance of finding both humor and a support system of colleagues to manage the challenges of working in healthcare.

Learn More About Michelle‘s Story

This photo was taken a little over a year after I enlisted in the U.S. Navy (USN). I had just finished my initial training as a fire controlman, and was en-route to my specialization school for the MK-15 Phalanx Close-In Weapon System (CIWS). I know it looks retro, but this was actually in the mid-1990s! It was the start of what would be one heck of an adventure. A few years after, I was accepted into NROTC at Marquette University, where I received my nursing degree and was commissioned as an Ensign in the USN. I went on to serve at Naval Medical Center Portsmouth (Virginia), Camp Doha and Camp Arifjan (Kuwait), and the Norfolk Naval Shipyard at Branch Medical Clinic Sewells Point (Virginia). I met and worked with some of the best people in the world and took away valuable experience and life lessons.

This picture was taken at the Johns Hopkins School of Nursing’s graduation and hooding ceremony. I am flanked by two phenomenal mentors: Drs. Jackie Campbell and Trish Davidson. I tend to be a more concrete, rule-based person, and these two powerful, accomplished women mustered extraordinary patience and kindness to help me get out of my comfort zone, take calculated risks, and successfully design, fund, and conduct real research. They were both incredibly supportive of my continued work at the hospital (while getting my doctorate), and encouraged my daughters to join in the fun (reading my papers, attending parties, listening to my defense!). Jackie and Trish are true role models for who I hope to be one day.

This is a rare shot of my family together: my husband, Mike, who I met while in the Navy (he was in the Coast Guard, but I love him anyway…), and our two daughters, Julia and Chloe. We were at a Johns Hopkins School of Nursing awards ceremony, where I was recognized for a project I lead during my ten years as the Safety Officer for the Johns Hopkins Hospital’s Emergency Department. It was also shortly after I graduated with my PhD. I’m so very grateful for the love and support of my beautiful (and well-dressed!) family. This journey has meaning because of them.