Harper Named New Dean of the Graduate School of Nursing

June 30, 2000

WORCESTER, Mass. - Following an intensive nationwide search, Doreen Harper, PhD, CS, ANP, FAAN, has been appointed dean of the Graduate School of Nursing at the University of Massachusetts Medical School (UMMS). A nurse practitioner and former associate professor of nursing at George Mason University (GMU), Dr. Harper replaces Lillian Goodman, EdD, GSN dean emerita, who retired in November 1999 after serving as both dean and interim dean of the graduate school for eight years.

According to Aaron Lazare, MD, UMMS chancellor and dean, "As a scholar and practicing nurse, Dodie Harper brings a broad array of experience to the graduate school that will only help to enhance our student nurses' roles in every aspect of medicine, nursing and health care- from education and research to policymaking and practice."

Harper was national coordinator for the W. K. Kellogg Foundation Community Partnership - Graduate Medical Nursing Education Initiative, a network of projects in six academic health centers and more than 33 clinical sites designed to educate and train health care practitioners providing primary care for vulnerable populations. She also served as director of community partnerships and faculty practice, and as director of the Nurse Practitioner Program at GMU's College of Nursing and Health Science and George Washington University's School of Medicine and Health Sciences, where she was responsible for a graduate program of more than 150 students. Prior to this experience, Harper chaired the undergraduate and RN to BSN programs in the Department of Nursing at the University of Maryland School of Nursing.

Harper received her doctoral degree in human development with a concentration in gerontology and her post-masters' graduate nurse practitioner preparation from the University of Maryland; her master's degree in psychiatric mental health nursing and anthropology from Catholic University in Washington, D.C.; and her bachelor's degree from Cornell University. In November 1999, Spring House Corporation recognized her with the Nurse Practitioner Lifetime Achievement Award. She is also a fellow of the American Academy of Nursing and served as president of the National Organization of Nurse Practitioner Faculties.

In addition to her administrative and teaching duties, Harper was a volunteer adult nurse practitioner for the Family Health Connections Mobile Van, which cares for underserved families in Prince William County, Virginia. She also maintained a practice at the GMU Student Health center for eight years. Dr. Harper is married to William A. Harper, a high school principal in Fairfax County, Virginia, and is the mother of three children, William, 20, Elizabeth, 19, and Carolyn Tory, 17. She is currently residing on the outskirts of Providence, R.I.

The University of Massachusetts Medical School is one of the fastest growing academic health centers in the country, attracting more than $93 million in research funding annually. A perennial top-ten finisher in the annual US News & World Report ranking of primary care medical schools, UMMS comprises a medical school, graduate school of nursing, graduate school of biomedical sciences and an active research enterprise, and is a leader in health sciences education, research, clinical care and public service. In 1998, the UMMS system of hospitals and clinics merged with Memorial Health Care to form UMass Memorial Health Care, the clinical partner of the Medical School.

The Graduate School of Nursing provides high-quality nursing education at the master's and doctoral level. The master's program prepares advanced practice nurses for positions as clinical nurse specialist, nurse practitioners, and managers in acute/critical care, ambulatory care or other healthcare settings. The doctoral program prepares nurse scientists for faculty, research and other nursing leadership positions.