Jessica Clark Named EHS Dean

February 22, 2021

Bradley University announces the appointment of Jessica Clark, DNP RN as the new dean of the College of Education and Health Sciences. She begins her role June 1, 2021.

Clark joined Bradley in 2019 as associate dean and director of nursing. As associate dean, she was responsible for maintaining both residential and online nursing programs. With a total enrollment of about 1,100 students, nursing is the university’s largest academic department.

Provost and Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs Walter Zakahi said Clark has been vital in the continued growth of Bradley’s nursing programs, all in the midst of a challenging pandemic climate.

“She helped relaunch the accelerated second degree nursing (ABSN) program in summer 2020,” he said. “Jessica also led the development of the psychiatric mental health practitioner track that begins this fall and will launch the two adult-gerontology nurse practitioner concentrations with focuses in primary and acute care settings. Those are slated to begin in the spring of 2022.”

Prior to her tenure at Bradley, Clark served as chair of the Department of Baccalaureate Nursing Completion at Indiana State University. Her teaching experience includes undergraduate and graduate studies via traditional campus and distance learning with large universities and small private colleges, including Norwich University, Ball State University and Saint Joseph’s College of Maine.

Before academia, Clark was the regional program director for telehealth programming with the Department of Veteran Affairs where she oversaw daily telehealth modalities of care for more than eight medical centers and 65 outpatient clinics spanning Illinois, Indiana and Michigan. She has worked in several practice areas such as emergency, critical care and medical-surgical nursing.

Clark looks forward to elevating the prior successes of the college and noted the importance of Bradley continuing to bridge the gaps in health care fields and meeting the demands for professionals in other areas, including K-12 education and family and consumer sciences.

“There is such a massive demand for graduates from the College of EHS in the Greater Peoria region and beyond,” she said. “We are well suited to reach a national audience with our distance education programs, as well as in our own backyard with our strong in-seat programs. With our dedicated faculty, staff and community partners, our college is positioned to meet these needs. The opportunities are endless.”

Clark graduated magna cum laude with a bachelor of science in nursing from Indiana State University in 2007, a master of science in nursing administration from Indiana State University in 2009 and a doctor of nursing practice with an administrative/education concentration from Chatham University in 2012.

She succeeds Professor of Physical Therapy Steve Tippett, who has served as interim dean of the college for the past year. Tippett took over the role from Professor of Nursing Molly Cluskey, who served as interim dean from May 2019 to May 2020. Cluskey also serves as director of online and distance education.