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Margee Cunningham

HDFS inspired Margee Cunningham '18 to pursue further degree in nursing


Margee Cunningham is the kind of registered nurse that a new mother wants alongside her during one of the most exciting—and sometimes the most worrisome—moments in her life. That’s when a new life is being brought into the world. Education and information are vitally important during pregnancy and postpartum, and providing these while caring for mothers hospitalized due to complications are areas where this Penn State graduate’s passions lie.

A 2018 graduate of Human Development and Family Studies (HDFS) and 2020 graduate of Nursing, Margee thoroughly enjoyed her coursework in HDFS and wanted to combine this knowledge with medicine, in some capacity. This is where the HDFS capstone internship can be a real game changer for students who are considering their next step. After searching for opportunities overseas, Margee found Unite for Sight. This healthcare initiative partners with local eye clinics and clinicians to bring needed ophthalmologic care to some of the most impoverished areas in Ghana, Honduras, and India. While immersing herself in this program for four months in Ghana, Margee knew she wanted to continue to teach and educate in her own community. She was also drawn to Teach for America and realized that her passion could be found in teaching within healthcare. She discovered that nursing was the perfect fit for her—to be able to share her knowledge and help those in their time of need. Perinatal care called to Margee and now, she enjoys helping women and their families in this vital health care field, in her new hometown of Allentown, Pennsylvania.

In her spare time away from the hospital, Margee enjoys board games with her husband, spending time with friends and family, finding new environmentally friendly activities, and attempting to find the best ice cream within 30 minutes of her home! Although nothing can compare to Berkey Creamery (she may just end up ordering some from Happy Valley, on dry ice!).

Margee encourages current students to explore all the opportunities that Penn State has to offer. She was a Lion Ambassador during her time at the University and took the opportunity to work the President’s tailgate at Beaver Stadium. She (and her dad, also a Penn State alumnus) were able to spend time watching the game in the President’s box, a memory for both that will last a lifetime. In exploring anything, she found that there were opportunities at Penn State she never would have embraced, but she is very glad she did.

This profile was published in June 2022.