Student Spotlight: Macall Willey

Macall Willey’s pursuit of nursing results from several factors and interests. As the daughter of a doctor, Macall has been exposed to the medical world from a young age and has always known nursing was an option. During her senior year of high school, she received her CNA certification and discovered her love of patient interaction. In addition, Macall is fascinated by the human body and loves anatomy (anatomy is one of her favorite classes of all time, a very hot take among nursing students). All of these things guided her to nursing, but it is ultimately her love of Jesus Christ and her desire to be like Him that has landed her at the College of Nursing. “I feel whole and uplifted when caring for other people,” she says.

Macall Willey

Her experiences with professors have always been positive, but three of them stand out as exceptional teachers and nurses. First, she says Dr. Blaine Winters, her first-semester lab instructor, caters to the needs of his students and shows genuine care for those he teaches. Second, Dr. Deborah Himes, her professor for NURS 295, kept the class organized and manageable, a quality that Macall loves. Lastly, Macall gave a shout-out to Dr. Sherry Tesseyman, calling her the “sweetest and most understanding lady,” as she brought snacks and worked with the class through difficult questions.

Macall is married to Hannu, her high school sweetheart. They got married during the height of the COVID-19 pandemic in May 2020. While the pandemic stopped their original plans of a big wedding, she loves how intimate and small their civil ceremony ended up being. They got sealed on the first anniversary, an occasion that Macall loves and cherishes.

Macall and Hannu

She is vibrant and fun, traits seen in her hobbies and interests. Macall loves to spend time at Sundance skiing while her husband snowboards. She was on her high school golf team and spent time over the summer practicing the sport. She is a self-proclaimed queen of Just Dance, a title she has earned through her memorization of several of the dances; on some songs, she can get five stars while wearing a blindfold because she knows it so well! Along with nursing, Macall is defined by her love of a core part of her life: potatoes. From whipped garlic mashed potatoes to sweet potato fries to loaded tater tots, Macall adores potatoes and is a proud owner of an “I love potatoes” shirt, thanks to her mom.

Macall and Hannu

The Healer’s art has also made her realize that she deserves to give herself sympathy, compassion, and genuine care. Macall loves the sympathy, compassion, and genuine care for her patients from a Christlike approach to nursing. “To take care of others, I have to take care of myself,” she says. For Macall, she must take breaks from the chaotic schedule of nursing school to recharge and check in with herself. Her favorite ways of doing so are taking a break from homework to do something fun, reading her scriptures, and exercising.

Macall is in her fourth semester and is beginning to think about what she wants her career to look like. One of her main interests is dermatology, a unique passion among BYU nursing students. “I like picking things. I like popping pimples. I like plucking eyebrows. Things like that,” she says. As of right now, Macall wants to get a cosmetic injection license and work either in a dermatology or plastic surgery office. She’s open to trying different careers, though, and has even thought about becoming a nurse practitioner. She’s excited to see what path she ends up choosing.

“Nursing is hard, but it’s awesome, and I’m so excited to be a nurse,” Macall says. We’re also excited for Macall and can’t wait to see what she accomplishes in her nursing career!

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