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WVU Online Faculty Testimonial - Melanie Whelan

Melanie Whelan profile image.

WVU School of Nursing Charleston Division

Teaching is an important part of being a nurse

Melanie Whelan

"I strive to learn and implement active teaching methods that engage students and help them to be successful in a rigorous academic program."

Melanie Whelan head shot.

Melanie Whelan with her family.

Melanie always wanted to be a teacher

Melanie Whelan always wanted to be a teacher, but when she was trying to decide what her college major would be, teaching positions were difficult to obtain in West Virginia.

"I knew I wanted to stay in West Virginia, and after talking with individuals who were nurses, I found that teaching is an important part of being a nurse," she says.
"One of the most important interventions nurses can complete is educating our patients."

Melanie currently teaches in the WVU School of Nursing and is based at the Charleston Division in West Virginia.

"In the RN to BSN program, our students are non-traditional and have various work/life schedules," she says. "A typical Monday thru Friday, 8 am to 4 pm schedule does not provide the flexibility non-traditional students need. I try to be available to meet with students during evening hours and check my email most weekends."

She describes herself as a student-centered instructor.

"I strive to learn and implement active teaching methods that engage students and help them to be successful in a rigorous academic program."
"I also provide students with my office and cell phone numbers so they can contact me whenever they need assistance. I continually remind them to communicate with me if they have questions or concerns."
"If I find a student has missed an assignment, I will reach out to them to see if everything is okay or if assistance is needed with the assignment. It is important to let students know you want them to succeed in your class."

q & a

What technology do you use in the classroom?

"In the School of Nursing, we use the SOLE learning management system. In SOLE, I can email students and post announcements."

What is your teaching style?

"I truly am a student-centered instructor."

About mentoring.

"I have been fortunate to have had excellent instructors and colleagues in my nursing education journey. Also, I too have completed online courses and remember what is was like as a student. These experiences have helped me grow and evolve as an educator."

What is the difference between online teaching vs on-campus?

"In my opinion, teaching online is more difficult then teaching on-campus. You have to work harder to be present for students, so they do not feel alone in their learning environment."

What is the key to student success?

"I believe that faculty presence is key to student success in my courses."

Inside WVU

Melanie received all her degrees from WVU – Associate Degree in Nursing, Bachelor of Science in Nursing, Master of Science in Nursing and PhD in Nursing. She received the School of Nursing Dean’s Spirit Award in 2022.

Outside WVU

Melanie is an Advanced Practice Registered Nurse (APRN), holds Family Practice Nurse Certification (FNP-BC), and is a Certified Nurse Educator (CNE).

Read Melanie Whelan’s Bio

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