Chandra Matteson ’19

Chicago, IL

Nursing@USC Student (RN, BSN, CEN)

What is your current position?
Nursing@USC Student (RN, BSN, CEN)

Where are you from?
Chicago, IL

Tell us about yourself.
I’m a graduate nursing student, and I currently work on the central coast of California in an emergency department setting. I’ve been a nurse since 2004, and I love what I do.

Why did you decide to earn your Master of Science in Nursing?
I really wanted to expand my knowledge base, and I felt that getting my MSN was the best way to do that. I also wanted to go into advanced clinical nursing, rather than management, so I thought becoming a nurse practitioner would be the way forward for me.

Why did you decide to pursue your degree with Nursing@USC?
I found Nursing@USC’s emphasis on social work really intriguing. I could imagine the emphasis on the social determinants of health being beneficial to me as a future provider. I am certain that the education I am receiving from the nursing faculty, along with the knowledge gained from viewing family practice nursing through a social work lens, will help me serve my patients’ needs once I’m practicing as a family nurse practitioner.

Do you attend Nursing@USC part time or full time?
I attend Nursing@USC on a part-time basis.

What excites you most about the program?
I love the exchange with other students as well as the challenge that instructors present to us in the virtual classroom. I also appreciate the enthusiasm of both the instructors as well as my advisors and the support staff. I feel like I’m part of a family.

Is there a course you have particularly enjoyed? If so, why?
I haven’t not enjoyed one yet — except for maybe the first half of Nursing 501: Pathophysiology for Advanced Nursing Practice. Although I’ve faced challenges each semester, I have loved — or loved/hated — every class I’ve taken.

In your opinion what is the best thing about earning your MSN online with USC?
The best thing is the quality of the education, the convenience of the online platform and the feeling that I now belong to the Trojan family.

Tell us about your on-campus intensive (OCI) experience.
My first OCI was very challenging, but in the end it was so worth the time and effort it took to get to that point. I loved meeting with my classmates and instructors. The White Coat Ceremony was the high point of the weekend and that whole first semester.

Is there a particular professor or faculty member that you have especially enjoyed working with?
I really enjoyed Dr. Granger because she never let me do less than she thought I was capable of, and I really appreciate that in an instructor. I love being challenged. If I didn’t, I wouldn’t be able to stay in this program.

Tell us about your clinical placement experience thus far.
I’ve had an excellent experience. The placement team has been great at helping me seamlessly secure placements from my referrals, which I was fortunate to have found on my own.

After graduation, what is next for you?
I’d like to get my acute care certification and eventually work in a rural area as a primary care provider and hospitalist. Someday I’d like to run a primary care service that does house calls to homebound patients. I love the idea of aging in place and would like to help facilitate that in our older and rural populations.

What else should we know about you?
I’m hilarious, I love bike riding and bowling, and I have amazing family and friends that help me navigate the rough patches and celebrate the smooth ones — in school as well as in life.