For Madeline Harris, MSN, RN, OCN, investing in the UAB School of Nursing Building Fund was all about family—her own, and her School of Nursing family. “I come from a family of medical professionals,” she said. Harris’s mother, daughter, sister-in-law and daughter-in-law are nurses, and her niece and nephew are UAB School of Health Professions graduates. “For us, it was a no brainer.”
Harris, an oncology nurse and two-time graduate of the UAB School of Nursing, together with her family, made a generous gift to name the dean’s suite reception area in the School’s building expansion.
The light-filled area will be named The Callans’ Family Legacy Luke 14:11 Suite in honor of Harris' parents and family.
As Director of the Community Foundation of Greater Birmingham’s Women’s Breast Health Fund, Harris has collaborated on breast cancer research and survivorship initiatives with the UAB School of Nursing for years. She also is an inaugural member of the School’s National Advisory Council.
“The UAB School of Nursing is a huge part of my life,” she said. “I’ve grown up—and grown old—with the professors who were there with me during my time as a student. They’re fabulous. They nurtured me and brought me to where I am today,” she said. “We were a family, and I still feel that today when working with students or being involved with programs in the School.”
Harris cherishes many fond memories of her time as an undergraduate and graduate student in the School, and she is eager to see the building transformation process completed.
“A building is just bricks and mortar if there’s not commitment and passion inside of it,” she said. “For me, I look at the building transformation and feel like we’re simply getting a new home—because the same great people and programs are still there and moving forward.
“My family and I are honored to have played a small part of a beautiful building transformation that will move nursing forward, so that when I need a very good nurse I’ll know who I want at my bedside.”
Harris earned her Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) in 1975 and her Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) in 1990. Her daughter, Kristen Noles, earned her MSN from the UAB School of Nursing in 2011 and is currently a Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) student and an adjunct faculty member in the School.