SPRING 2019 VOL.34, NO.3

Black and white old photo of nursing students in uniform on the lawn

50 Years of Graceland Nursing

A History of Innovation. A Present of Leadership. A Future of Excellence.

Graceland University’s history as an institution for educating nurses dates back more than 50 years. Originally a diploma program that was a partnership with the Independence Sanitarium and Hospital, Graceland’s nursing program has been a leader for decades. 1968 – 69 marked the first cohort of students in the baccalaureate program and, 50 years later, the nursing program continues to produce graduates who are empathetic, committed to patient care and among the most respected in the profession.

President Pat Draves

The Tradition of Excellence

When I joined Graceland in 2017, I was acutely aware of the tradition of excellence that has existed as a part of this university’s DNA. One area that has been a shining example of that excellence for more than 50 years is the nursing program.

Graceland College Independence Education Center sign

Nursing Through the Years

A photo gallery

Sherri Kirkpatrick, PhD

Looking Back

There are very few people who impacted the history of Graceland’s nursing program more than Sherri Kirkpatrick, PhD. 

Krishelle Ivory

Taking Care

Krishelle Ivory ’10 knew early on that she wanted to work with kids. What she couldn’t decide was whether to be an educator or a nurse.

Patrick Kirk

Beyond Basic Training

Even in his early 20s, Patrick Kirk ’19 has already had a great deal of experience in the health care field, which he has used to his benefit in the Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) program at Graceland’s Independence campus. 

Christina Koch

Next Steps

Christina Koch ’20 always knew she wanted to work in health care, even if she wasn’t certain which field. 

Two nursing students practicing taking blood pressure

Nursing Club

The first nursing club at Graceland began 40 years ago during the 1979-80 school year and was an option for student involvement for about six years.

Nursing students experimenting in a lab

The Path of Discovery

Graceland students who have gone through the pre-professional programs on the Lamoni campus have a history of success as they take the next steps in their career path.

Margaret McKevit

Leading the Way

A Conversation with Graceland’s Deans of the School of Nursing


Dr. Jonathan Montalvo

Creating Global Citizens

Jonathan Montalvo moved to Indiana from Lares, Puerto Rico, when he was 15 years old. He completed high school there before attending Purdue University and then going on to get his master’s degree in Spanish literature from Western Michigan University and his PhD in Hispanic cultural studies from Michigan State University.


Volleyball Coach Stew McDole with a group of female volleyball student athletes

A Winning Philosophy

2018 was a big year for Women’s Volleyball Head Coach STEW McDOLE ’65 — the latest of many, many big years in his 37 seasons coaching the Yellowjackets — and his accomplishments and accolades shine a light on the impact he has had on the volleyball world.


Rendering of the Closson post project completion

The Closson Project

With funding for Newcom Student Union nearing completion, we are excited to turn our attention to Graceland’s architectural icon: CLOSSON PHYSICAL EDUCATION CENTER.

Harry Ashenhurst, PhD

Expanding Our Horizons

Graceland celebrates the 50th anniversary of the School of Nursing in this issue of Horizons. It is a great example of how many different people and their accomplishments have made us what we are today. What an impressive record!  

Rendering of the new Newcom Student Union upon completion

Newcom Student Union

As you read in the previous issue of Horizons, construction will begin this spring on the renovation and expansion of the Memorial Student Center (MSC) as it is transformed into Newcom Student Union.


David Siddall

Meet Graceland's New Vice President for Business and Finance

In November 2018, Graceland hired DAVID SIDDALL ’85 as the Vice President for Business and Finance.

Zac Harmon-McLaughlin

Leading With Heart

ZAC HARMON-MCLAUGHLIN, MA, '08, joined Graceland's staff as the director of the Community of Christ Seminary in March 2019.

Jeanne Davis

Class Notes

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