Clark named dean of the College of Nursing
Jessica Clark, DNP, RN, dean of the College of Education and Health Sciences at Bradley University in Peoria, Illinois, has been named the new dean of the Creighton University College of Nursing, effective Jan. 8, 2024.
Clark had served as associate dean and director of the Department of Nursing at Bradley, which included both undergraduate and graduate programs, since 2019 before being promoted to her current role in 2021.
“I am thrilled that Dr. Clark is bringing her extensive academic, professional and clinical leadership skills to Creighton,” said Creighton Provost Mardell Wilson, EdD, RDN, “and I look forward to the advances she will facilitate in the College of Nursing for faculty, staff and students.”
Clark succeeds Catherine Todero, PhD, BSN’72, who retired this past summer after serving as dean of the College of Nursing since 2015 and vice provost for Health Sciences Campuses since 2019. Creighton nursing faculty members and administrators Mary Kunes-Connell, PhD, and Helen Hurst, DNP, have been serving as co-interim deans and will continue to do so until Clark’s arrival in January.
At Bradley, Clark was instrumental in relaunching a second-degree accelerated nursing program and developing and implementing new programming in psychiatric mental health and two concentrations for adult-gerontology nurse practitioners. She also has extensive teaching experience, both at the undergraduate and graduate levels, and a proven track record for developing and promoting local and extended partnerships that support quality programs and co-curricular activities for students. Since 2021, under Clark’s leadership, nearly $3 million has been raised to support Bradley’s College of Education and Health Sciences.
Prior to joining higher education, Clark was the regional clinical program director for telehealth with the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, overseeing telehealth modalities of care for eight medical centers and 65 outpatient clinics in three states. She also has worked in several practice areas, including emergency, critical care and medical-surgical nursing. She began her nursing career as an ER staff nurse.
Clark earned her Doctor of Nursing Practice degree, with an administrative/education concentration, from Chatham University in Pittsburgh, a master’s degree in nursing administration from Indiana State University, and her BSN also from Indiana State.
For nearly 60 years, Creighton has been a leader in nursing education. Creighton’s College of Nursing offers bachelor’s, master’s and doctorate degree programs and operates on three campuses – in Omaha; Grand Island, Nebraska; and Phoenix. In the latest U.S. News & World Report rankings, Creighton was rated No. 31 for Best Undergraduate Nursing Programs in the country.