Mary Jo Quick was faced with grievous losses that steered her decisions about education and a career, and both turned out to be very good choices.
While still a teenager, Quick cared for her terminally ill mother with help from her aunts who were nurses. After losing her mother and shortly after her father, Quick decided to enroll in the Nursing Program at Moraine Valley. It was the right school at the right time,” she said.
Her career commenced as an oncology nurse at Little Company of Mary Hospital in Evergreen Park, where she also worked in hospice and oversaw the volunteering services. Now as the vice president of Mission and Spirituality at Little Company of Mary, her responsibilities have changed but not her aspiration of making a difference in the lives of patients and families. “Leadership formation is a term widely used in Catholic health care to describe how an individual learns the integration of the organization’s heritage, faith identity, and its core values. My role is integral to this for not only leaders and board trustees but all employees as well,” she said.
The work she does at the hospital has been very gratifying for Quick, who earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Health Administration and a Master in Health Administration from the University of St. Francis. “I get to blend my professional and spiritual life. How many other people can say they get to do that?” she said.
Her nursing experience has given Quick a deeper understanding of what the patients and their families are going through. “That helps me be more compassionate, which is part of the mission of the Venerable Mary Potter,” she said. “The name Little Company of Mary comes from the faithful followers who remained with her at the foot of the cross offering their compassion. That’s what drew me to this hospital. You have an internal drive to help people, but then to combine it with my faith—well, that’s where I was called to be.”
Quick credits Moraine Valley with providing a strong education foundation and outstanding faculty. “The college has a great curriculum with a standing reputation for state board passage, and I enjoyed that community atmosphere very much,” she said.