Profile: Dr. Mike Mabry
A longtime physician with MSU's John C. Longest Student Health Center, Dr. Mike Mabry sees practicing medicine as his way of ministering to others. His job gives him the opportunity to treat people's health issues with his kind, gentle mannerthe approach to patient care reflects his personal value system, he says.
The Liberty native was raised as a Bulldog fan. His father's 1939 diploma hangs in his office near his own MSU undergraduate diploma and his University of Mississippi Medical Center M.D.
"My whole family loved Mississippi State, and I grew up being a State fan," Mabry says.
When he came to college, he thought he might try engineering, but instead he decided on pre-med. He said he could try it for a year and then easily change his major if pre-med didn't stick. But, as the doctor's distinguished career shows, it was the right choice.
After Mabry finished at MSU and UMC, he did a residency in family practice. It was during his third year that he had the opportunity to spend a month in a rotation he selectedworking under Dr. John C. Longest at Mississippi State. The experiences at MSU during Mabry's pre-med days and again during his family practice residency led him to conclude that MSU would be an ideal place to spend his career. Apparently, Longest agreed that Mabry and MSU were a good match because he offered Mabry the job of university physician in 1978.
"Dr. Longest had a big influence on me. He was a wonderful physician and a wonderful person to work with," Mabry said. Since Longest's retirement several years ago, Mabry said that Dr. Bob Collins is the only other person left on staff who has been at the health center longer than himself.
Mabry said Collins, his longtime colleague and friend, as well as Longest's successor as director, has also been a great leader, guiding the health center through transition and embracing modern innovations, such as electronic medical records.
But Mabry is quick to give credit to the No. 1 person responsible for his own successful and rewarding career. He says he would not have found success without the support and influence of his wife Debbie, to whom he's been married nearly 37 years.
Mabry says that even after years of experience, medicine is a practice that always brings new challenges. "I find that part of it very interesting," he says.
Most of all, he says he likes being able to help people and share in their life. "Hopefully, I can leave a positive impact," he added.
He says college students are especially fun patients to care for because most want to take care of themselves, which allows him to take a preventative health care approach.
"I always like to do things to help people help themselves," Mabry says.
Next week … Emmitt Johnson Jr. !