Fairfield University Professor Jean W. Lange, a recognized scholar in gerontological education, named founding dean of Quinnipiac University's School of Nursing



Image: Jean LangeFairfield University School of Nursing Professor Jean W. Lange, Ph.D., RN, has accepted a position to become the founding dean of a new nursing school in North Haven, Conn.

For the position, Quinnipiac University sought a visionary and innovative leader, as well as an individual with a distinguished record in undergraduate and graduate nursing education. It found those attributes in Lange. "Fairfield provided many resources and opportunities that allowed me to be challenged and to expand my capacity to lead," she said.

During her 13 years as a Fairfield faculty member, Lange, of Woodbridge, Conn., was honored repeatedly by national organizations, while being at the forefront of educating nursing students nationwide to care for older adults and, at the same time, improve their quality of life. In addition, she is a recognized scholar in gerontological education and end of life concerns, cross-cultural research and instrument development, one who has chaired the integration of gerontology education across the curriculum at Fairfield's School of Nursing. Her research interests are centered on the access of vulnerable populations to quality care.

One of the many great contributions that Lange made during her years of generous and productive teaching, scholarship and service at Fairfield was her leadership in the conceptualization and launch of the School of Nursing's Doctorate in Nursing Practice. Rev. Paul J. Fitzgerald, S.J., Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs at Fairfield, noted that she was able to call forth the professional creativity of her faculty colleagues to produce a proposal which not only garnered support from accrediting and licensing bodies but also drew high praise. "Referees commented positively on the way our new programs are designed not only to bring state-of-the-art education for doctorally prepared nurse leaders, who will be at the highest level of scientific competence, but also will have the second and third distinctive features of Jesuit education: care for the whole person and advocacy for the most vulnerable," Fr. Fitzgerald said. "I expect that Dean Lange will bring these same great leadership skills with her to Quinnipiac for the continued good of the profession of nursing."

For her many achievements, Lange was inducted as a fellow last year in the American Academy of Nursing (AAN), considered one of the highest honors in the nursing profession. She was awarded a 2010 End-of-Life Nursing Education Consortium (ELNEC) award, a national honor bestowed by the American Association of Colleges of Nursing (AACN) to individuals considered central to improving palliative care in the United States. Understandably, the Hartford Foundation hailed her as "a national voice for geriatric nursing."

Lange, a Geneva, N.Y. native, said Fairfield University is "a tough act to follow." "It's hard to leave Fairfield - there are lots of special people here," she said. "I hope to stay connected to my good friends. They include my colleagues at the School of Nursing and those across departments [at the university]."

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Media Contact: Meg McCaffrey, (203) 254-4000, ext. 2726, mmccaffrey@fairfield.edu

Posted on June 3, 2011

Vol. 43, No. 319