March 23, 2022
Marie T. Nolan headshot

Marie T. Nolan, professor and scholar, has been appointed by Catholic University President John Garvey as the next dean of the Conway School of Nursing. Nolan, M. Adelaide Nutting Endowed Chair at Johns Hopkins School of Nursing, will assume her new duties in May.

Nolan earned her bachelor’s degree in nursing from Niagara University, a master of science in nursing from Boston College, a master of science in education from Johns Hopkins University, a master of public health from George Washington University, and her Ph.D. in nursing from Catholic University.

“I am so pleased to welcome back Marie Nolan to Catholic University. She has had a remarkable career at Johns Hopkins University and has a solid background of leadership in bioethics, education, and practice,” says University President John Garvey. “We are thrilled she is bringing her passion and experience in nursing back to the Catholic University, especially as we look forward to growing our nursing program after the opening of the new Nursing and Sciences Building.” 

Nolan has spent more than 20 years in academic leadership positions and advancing research on improving the quality of care for patients and their families at the end of life. 

“To serve in this capacity at this challenging time in our history will be the greatest honor and privilege of my career,” Nolan says. “The pandemic and the suffering it has caused calls out to us to reclaim what it means to be a nurse and more specifically, what it means to be a nurse from The Catholic University of America Conway School of Nursing; a nurse who recognizes each human person as created in the image and likeness of God with inherent dignity. It is also an honor to follow in the footsteps of Dean Emerita Patricia McMullen, who for the past 12 years has led the School of Nursing faculty in preparing nurse-leaders known for their intellectual and moral strength; who continually seek to develop a well-formed conscience to make decisions for the good.

“My vision for nursing is grounded in the ‘Trilogy’ model of nursing proposed by Brother Ignatius Perkins, fellow Catholic University Ph.D. graduate in nursing, with three interrelated phenomena: Human Dignity, Human Flourishing and Human Freedom. Human dignity as the inestimable value of every person, human flourishing as the desired outcome of human nature, and human freedom as the intentional search for the good by the patients, families, and communities whom we accompany on their journey.” 

As Nolan arrives at Catholic University, construction is beginning on the Nursing and Sciences Building, which is expected to open in 2024 and allow the school to double its enrollment and increase its faculty. 

“Being part of The Catholic University of America and all it stands for holds great promise for the Conway School of Nursing to transform healthcare through the formation of nurses with the moral courage to lead the charge,” Nolan says.

Nolan was raised in Iowa and practiced in clinical leadership positions in Boston, Chicago, and Washington, D.C., before completing her Ph.D. at Catholic University and accepting a position at Johns Hopkins. She is married to Patrick Nolan and they live in Beltsville, Md.