Two things were important to Jan Lee when she considered accepting a position in the nursing department at Clarke University – getting closer to home and the values of the university.Dr. Lee joins Clarke as the chair of the nursing department after spending most of her career at some of the best universities in the nation. A native of Reinbeck, Iowa, Lee graduated from the University of Iowa with a bachelor’s of science in nursing and then earned graduate degrees at the University of California-Los Angeles (UCLA) and the University of Southern California (USC). She also taught at both schools, and then held administrative positions in the nursing departments at both the University of Michigan and the University of Tennessee.“When I heard about the job opening (at Clarke) both of my parents were not doing well and I wanted to get closer to home,” Lee said.Her dad has since died, but her mom still lives on the farm near Reinbeck.“It’s good for her and it’s good for me,” Lee said. “I can go to family events. I have a lot of extended family and they’re growing up fast. I have a lot of nieces and nephews and great-nieces and great-nephews.”Lee has found another home at Clarke.“I love the atmosphere,” she said. “I was very much attracted to the values they have here. They fit very well with my way of looking at the world and higher education. People are all on an even level here. They’re all part of the same effort. That fosters working in a team-based approach.”Clarke is happy to have Lee on the staff.“Jan’s wealth of experience, her devotion to the nursing field and her personal values make her an excellent fit into the Clarke community,” said Joan Lingen, provost and vice president of academic affairs.Lee has spent her career at large state schools. In her two most recent jobs, she spent eight years directing the undergraduate and nontraditional programs at Michigan, and 10 years as the associate dean of academic affairs for the College of Nursing at Tennessee.But she is excited to be at Clarke. “With rapid changes in health and health care, this is an exciting time to be guiding and supporting the high-quality nursing programs here at Clarke. It seems like such a good fit for me,” Lee said. “And I’m happy to be back in Iowa.”
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