Dean Hern to step down

Dean Hern to step down

Dean Marcia J. Hern, Ed.D., C.N.S., R.N.

University of Louisville School of Nursing Dean Marcia J. Hern will step down after 10 years in the position.

Hern, Ed.D., C.N.S., R.N., will serve as dean at least through early fall 2017. She announced her decision to faculty and staff on Friday, Feb. 10.

“We are becoming a true community of scholars,” Hern said. “Our students are some of the best and brightest, and they remain our reason for being. We have accomplished so very much during the past 10 years, and I am looking forward to a new chapter of my personal and professional life.”

Hern oversaw substantial growth and improvements at the school.

The School of Nursing’s building at the downtown UofL Health Sciences Center underwent significant remodeling, including the construction of a state-of-the-art 159-seat auditorium. The number of clinical simulation labs grew from one to five, incorporating advanced technology. This summer, further technology improvements will be implemented with the renovation of one of the labs thanks to donations from The Bufford Family Foundation and Trilogy Health Services. Also, extensive upgrades have been made in two 100-seat classrooms and two conference rooms. 

Under Hern’s leadership, the School of Nursing launched a traditional bachelor’s degree program based in Owensboro and two new graduate degrees.

The Doctor of Nursing Practice program prepares nurses to be leaders in clinical, health policy and administrative positions. The inaugural cohort of the program began class in fall 2016. The Master’s Entry into Professional Nursing program is designed for college graduates who are seeking to transition to a nursing career, equipping them with both bachelor’s and master’s degrees in nursing. The program’s first cohort will graduate in May.

In 2009, the School of Nursing opened an extension campus in Owensboro, which offers the only traditional nursing bachelor’s degree program in the region. 

Standards for students admitted to the school have risen and pass rates on the national council licensure examination for registered nurses have remained above the national average.

Since 2007, enrollment has steadily increased and the number of full-time faculty has grown from 39 to 52, with part-time faculty totaling 40.

Hern earned both her M.S.N. and Ed.D. from the University of Cincinnati. She spent 21 years at the University of Cincinnati College of Nursing, working as a professor of pediatric nursing, department chair and executive director of community outreach and development. From 2004 to 2007, she served as dean of Texas Woman’s University College of Nursing - then the fifth largest nursing school in the country - leading three campuses in Dallas, Denton and Houston.

UofL Interim President Greg Postel has tapped Executive Dean of Health Affairs and School of Medicine Dean Toni Ganzel to lead a search committee in choosing Hern’s replacement. 

Feb. 14, 2017