A math and biology double major from Fairfield, CT, Nakia Mabin ’19 is pursuing a career as a nurse anesthetist in fall 2019.

A Mind for Math

Nakia Mabin ’19 is good with numbers. Really good. As a senior, she earned the Lyne Murphy Mathematics Award, an honor that recognizes excellence in the field of mathematics. Now, the math and biology double major is applying her talents to become a nurse anesthetist.

In fall 2019, Nakia will enter the accelerated nursing program at Massachusetts College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences (MCPHS). She plans on completing her bachelor of science in nursing and a master’s degree in mathematics before pursuing certification as a registered nurse anesthetist (CRNA).

Photo of Nakia Mabin '19, a math and biology double major
An accomplished student athlete, one of Nakia’s favorite memories at Elms was making it to the NECC women’s basketball championship during her sophomore year. That experience helped her and her teammates form “forever bonds,” she said.

For Nakia, working as a CRNA offers the perfect mix of her academic interests.

“Anesthesia is math, medicine, and biology all together,” she said. “The main reason I chose nursing over medical school is the patient-nurse relationship.”

“My Advisors Kept Pushing Me”

Majoring in math was almost the story that never happened for Nakia. Coming to Elms, she thought that she wanted to pursue a career in teaching, so she declared as an education major. Meeting with her advisors, however, gave her a different perspective on her skill with numbers.

“At one point, I was going to drop my math major, but Dr. Williams told me to keep it, because it would stand out on med school applications,” Nakia said.

“Dr. Berry convinced me to take his chess class, and that had me really thinking outside of the box,” she added. “I wanted to stick with him.”

Photo of Brianna Belgrave-Sealy '19 and Nakia Mabin '19
As treasurer for her class, Nakia was an active leader in the Student Government Association.

As a forward for the women’s basketball team, Nakia learned to study whenever — and whenever — she could, often taking her homework with her on the bus as the team traveled to away games. She even helped out teammates and friends as a tutor, offering advice on statistics and other math concepts.

Despite the pressures of time management, and the challenge of discrete math and number theory, Nakia returns to her passion again and again, all for the satisfaction of solving complex questions.

“What I find most rewarding about math is the excitement of actually solving a problem that you didn’t think you could solve,” she said. “It’s the adrenaline.”

Reflecting on her experiences at Elms, Nakia is grateful for the motivation that Dr. Berry and Dr. Williams gave her.

“I think that Elms did a great job,” she said. “My advisors just kept pushing me and pushing me.”